This week’s Torah portion is called עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118, which is translated here as ‘because’, and the root meaning of this word means, ‘consequence, as a consequence of, because’ and can also be rendered, or understood, as, ‘reward’.
What this Torah portion is, in effect, starting with, is the ‘consequences’ or ‘reward’ for hearing and doing the commands of יהוה!
And ‘because’ you hear and do these right-rulings, יהוה will guard you with His Covenant and loving-commitment!!!
This Hebrew word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118, as I have mentioned, is also rendered as ‘reward’, as seen in the following verse:
Tehillah/Psalm 19:11 “Also, Your servant is warned by them, in guarding them there is great reward.”
The Psalmist is declaring here that he is not only warned by the right-rulings of יהוה, but that he also acknowledges, that in ‘guarding’ them there is great reward!
Therefore, we are able to see the simple truth that: ‘because’ you guard the commands, there is reward, and the reward is that יהוה guards you with the covenant!!!
This word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is a marker of a cause, or reason, for an event; and speaks to us about the benefit that is given to another, based on one’s merit for proper behaviour or trustworthiness!
What we must understand here, is that in paying attention (which is to be listening carefully) and doing what we are to hear, guard and do – there is a great promise and reward.
This word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 comes from the denominative verb עָקַב aqaḇ – Strong’s H6117 which means, ‘to follow at the heel, circumvent’ and is the root verb of the word עָקֵב aqeḇ – Strong’s H6119 which means, ‘heel, footprint, hind part’.
What we can understand then, from a Hebraic perspective, is that the blessing of יהוה, in the promise of His guarding and loving us, will follow quickly ‘on the heel’ of our ‘paying attention’ to these right-rulings and commands, giving prominence in carrying them out diligently.
A derivative of the word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is one that we all know very well, as it is the name יַעֲקֹב Ya’aqoḇ – Strong’s H3290, and his name means, ‘heel holder, catcher, supplanter’.
The ‘heel’ is the last part of the body to come out of the womb and so, this word also speaks of the hind or latter part; and with Ya’aqoḇ ‘catching the heel’ of Ěsaw, we see how, even at birth, he sought the ‘blessing’ of the first born!
As we look at his life, we can also learn a great deal, regarding the blessings of יהוה that ‘followed hard after his heel’, when he walked in obedience to the instructions of Elohim!
We too are to ‘follow hard after the heel’ of Messiah, so to speak, and as we walk in Him, we are to ‘follow Him so closely’ that there is no room for us to turn aside from the straight path of righteousness!
There was an ancient saying, that stated that a student should follow his teacher so closely by ‘drinking his words, and be covered by the dust of his feet’. The talmidim/disciple would travel the dusty roads of Palestine with his rabbi (master), learning what the master taught, and be found to be walking the way the master walked!
The rabbi (master) would walk through town with his disciples following close on his heels like a mother duck and her ducklings. A traditional blessing arose amongst the religious community that stated, “May you be covered with the dust of your rabbi.” In other words, may you follow him so closely that he is “all over you.”
We only have One Good Shepherd, Teacher and Master (Rabbi) – יהושע Messiah, who we are to follow so closely, as we walk in Him. And the consequences of doing this results in a joy-flied set-apart walk of righteousness that we are to guard with our all, being alert and awake to not be found turning aside from the Truth!
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 2:6 “The one who says he stays in Him ought himself also to walk, even as He walked.”
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:21 “For to this you were called, because Messiah also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps”
In terms of the use of the word ‘rabbi’, I would like to highlight what this word means and take a look at its use in Scripture. The reason for me doing this, is to simply set straight any misconceptions that there may be, in regards to this term.
In Judaism, a ‘rabbi’ is considered to be a ‘teacher of Torah’ and the Greek word that is used in the Renewed Writings for ‘rabbi’ is ῥαββί rhabbi – Strong’s G4461 which means, ‘my master, my teacher, my great one’ and is a transliterated word, from the Hebrew, which means, ‘my master, my great one’.
This term ‘rabbi’ is not found in the Tanak (O.T.) but is clearly understood that this Greek word is derived from the Hebrew root word רַב raḇ – Strong’s H7227 which means, ‘many, abundance, much, great, abounding, plentiful’, which comes from the primitive root רָבַב raḇaḇ – Strong’s H7231 which means, ‘to be or become much or many, abound, increase’.
The Hebrew term רַב raḇ – Strong’s H7227 was used in reference to someone who occupied a high and respected position, and is translated as ‘chief’, as in:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 40:2 “And the chief of the guard took Yirmeyahu and said to him, “יהוה your Elohim has spoken this evil on this place.”
This term ‘rabbi’, essentially means, ‘my great one’ and is often confused by many into thinking that this term only means, ‘my teacher’.
While the concept of one’s teacher, being seen by their students as their ‘great one’, can be understood, we take note of the clear instruction that our Master gives us, when telling us not to be called ‘rabbi’, as seen in:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 23:8 “But you, do not be called ‘Rabbi,’ for One is your Teacher, the Messiah, and you are all brothers.”
Our Master goes on to say that we should call no one ‘Father’ and that we should neither be called ‘leaders’, as seen in:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 23:9-11 “And do not call anyone on earth your father, for One is your Father, He who is in the heavens. 10 “Neither be called leaders, for One is your Leader, the Messiah. 11 “But the greatest among you shall be your servant.”
The Greek word that is translated here as ‘leader/leaders’ is καθηγητής kathēgētēs – Strong’s G2519 which means, ‘leader, teacher’ and this same Greek word is used in Mattithyahu/Matthew 23:8 for ‘Teacher’.
Why I am mentioning this, is to highlight what Our Great Master is teaching us, as we must recognise that we have only One ‘Great One’.
This Greek word καθηγητής kathēgētēs – Strong’s G2519 is only used 3 times, all of which are found in the above passage from Mattithyahu/Matthew 23.
There are many today who claim that they do not need ‘teachers’ and through immaturity, they claim this by misinterpreting our Master’s words.
In Eph’siyim/Ephesians 4:11 we are clearly told that our Master and Elohim appointed some to be ‘teachers’, which is translated from the Greek word διδάσκαλος didaskalos – Strong’s G1320 which means, ‘teacher, instructor’ and this word comes from the word διδάσκω didaskō – Strong’s G1321, which is a verb that is a prolonged causative form of the verb δάω daō which means ‘to learn, to teach’.
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 4:11 “And He Himself gave some as emissaries, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as shepherds and teachers”
In terms of those who are appointed to lead, we are told in:
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 13:7 “Remember those leading you, who spoke the Word of Elohim to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their belief.”
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 13:17 “Obey those leading you, and be subject to them, for they watch for your lives, as having to give account. Let them do so with joy and not groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 13:24 “Greet all those leading you, and all the set-apart ones. Those from Italy greet you.”
In the above 3 verses, the Greek word used here for ‘leading’ is ἡγέομαι hēgeomai – Strong’s G2233 which means, ‘to lead, ruler, govern, count, consider’, and is understood to mean, ‘to lead, go first, lead the way’ and therefore, pictures one who leads by example!
Once again, the reason for me making mention of these various Greek words, is to highlight that our Master has appointed some to lead and to teach His body and to train them to maturity!
Our Master was NOT saying that you do not need to be led or taught by others, which is what many are claiming today, as they refuse to submit to the appointed order of the Master, as most prefer to do whatever is right in their own eyes!
So, what is the Master telling us?
He is making it clear, that you should not put anyone on a pedestal and call them your great one (rabbi), as it is the one who serves that shall be the greatest amongst us!
The Head of the Body is Messiah and, in His Body, He has appointed some to teach, and to lead others, equipping them to go and make taught ones.
The Pharisees of the day put themselves in such high self-appointed positions of authority over others and Messiah made it clear that they love to make their tsitsit long, and wanted to have the best places at feasts and the best seats in the congregations and they loved to be greeted in the markets places and loved to be called ‘rabbi, rabbi’.
Those who position themselves like this are not true teachers and leaders of the Torah, yet we see today how so many follow such people, while they are simply refusing to remember, obey and greet those leading them in the Word of Elohim!
In terms of ‘walking in the dust of the Rabbi’, I want to make it clear that this customary adopted phrase should cause us to do our utmost in following our Master and Elohim, our Great One, our teacher of Righteousness, so closely, that we are able to truly reflect and represent His walk.
Therefore, while we must recognise that there are some who are appointed to teach and lead, whom the body is called to consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their belief, we have One Head and that is Messiah! We have One Rabbi – that is Messiah – and He, as Head, has appointed some to lead and teach!
The main reason for me highlighting this, is to refute any false claims that there are no teachers necessary and emphasise that we are called to obey and follow the teaching and leading of those that the Master has appointed, while making sure that, in doing so, we are to never put anyone on a pedestal and elevate them to such a point of them being called by others as their ‘Great One’!
Back to the word BECAUSE – עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118:
Let us briefly do a study on this word, in order to set the scene, so to speak, of this Torah portion!
As we consider this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118, that is translated here as ‘because’, we must also take careful note of how important this little word is and what is signifies for us, as it is a word that pre-empts the resulting consequences of one’s action, be it good or bad!
This word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is used 15 times in the Tanak, and as we consider the use of this word, in each verse that it is used in, then we are able to see how just and righteous the reward of Elohim is, for both the righteous and the unrighteous.
Let us therefore take a look at the use of this word, in the 15 verses that it is used in the Tanak:
The first time this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118is used is in:
Berěshith/Genesis 22:18 “And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.”
The result of Aḇraham’s complete obedience, caused him to receive the full assurance of the complete blessing of Elohim! He did not withhold his only son Yitsḥaq, and because he obeyed the voice of Elohim, the promise was given to him, that all nations of the earth would be blessed in his seed, which was the prophetic promise of Messiah, that would come forth from his genealogy!
The genealogy of Messiah, in Mattithyahu/Matthew 1, begins with Aḇraham, which is very important for us to recognise, as it is with Aḇraham that יהוה made an Everlasting Covenant… all because he obeyed יהוה!
This is again confirmed to Yitsḥaq, in:
Berěshith/ Genesis 26:4-5 “And I shall increase your seed like the stars of the heavens, and I shall give all these lands to your seed. And in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed, 5 because Aḇraham obeyed My voice and guarded My Charge: My commands, My laws, and My Torot.”
BECAUSE Aḇraham obeyed יהוה and guarded the charge, the commands, the laws and the Torot (plural of Torah) of יהוה, the promise of יהוה was confirmed to his son Yitsḥaq, confirming the prophetic promise and assurance of the Messiah, the blessing of all the earth, that would come forth from their lineage – for יהוה Himself would come down teaching and bring comfort and rest to the despairing, and would do so, as He covenanted with Aḇraham, by coming forth as The Seed of the promise, through the lineage of Aḇraham!
I often think that many people fail to grasp the magnitude of the Covenant Promise that יהוה made with Aḇraham, as He chose a man, who faithfully obeyed the voice of Elohim completely, to be the way in which He would be brought forth, as The Seed that would bless all the nations!
The clear choice of יהוה to handpick this great ‘father of our faith’, as the patriarch for His promised deliverance through his seed, which is Messiah, was given because of Aḇraham’s complete obedience!
In other words, because of Aḇraham’s obedience, יהוה chose this man’s lineage to come forth as a man, the second Aḏam, the Son of Aḏam!
He chose to become the Son of a man, who showed a compete surrendered obedience, in order to redeem the disobedient back unto Himself, and restore His image in mankind, giving the promise of restoration unto those who obey His Charge, Commands, Laws and Torot!
The reason for me placing emphasise on this word ‘because’, is simply to highlight the need for us to embrace the Truth, guard the Word and walk in it, with the resulting assurance that we have in our Master… that because we do obey, we shall be blessed in our guarding to do all that is commanded!
Let us take a look at the next occurrence of this root word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118, in Scripture:
Bemiḏbar/Numbers 14:24 “But My servant Kalěḇ, because he has a different spirit in him and has followed Me completely, I shall bring into the land where he went, and his seed shall inherit it.”
The result of continually disobeying יהוה’s voice, after having been delivered from Mitsrayim and having seen the esteem of יהוה, the entire nation of fighting men was sentenced to death in the Wilderness, and they would not enter into the Promised Rest, except Yehoshua and Kalěḇ.
Here, in this verse, we see how יהוה, once again identifies, in Scripture, the one who obeys His voice, and while a generation had received the death sentence, Kalěḇ is singled out here, as being a ‘servant’ of Elohim, and is given the promise that his seed shall inherit the land that had been promised… all because he had a ‘different’ spirit in him and had ‘followed יהוה completely’!
Kalěḇ is a great example for us, in showing us the assurance that we have in our Master and King – and that is that while we, who stay in our Master and Elohim and follow Him completely, and have a different spirit in us (that is the set-apart Spirit of Elohim), have the promise of entering into His rest!
This we get to ‘rehearse’ each week, as we guard to keep the Sabbath, while the majority of man does not – because we walk in the Spirit of Elohim and follow Him completely… a different spirit to that which is in the worldly ways of sinful man!
There remains the promise of entering into the rest of Elohim – that is to enter into His Reign that is coming – and we can learn from this verse a simply truth: because we walk in the spirit and guard the Torah completely, we who stay in Him will enter into the Reign with Him!!!
The next verse where we see this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used, is the verse that starts this Torah portion!!!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 7:12 “And it shall be, because you hear these right-rulings, and shall guard and do them, that יהוה your Elohim shall guard with you the covenant and the loving-commitment which He swore to your fathers”
Because you hear… guard… do… the right-rulings of Elohim… יהוה will guard you with the loving-commitment He swore to Aḇraham, Yitsḥaq and Ya’aqoḇ!!!
The next verse we see this root word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used, is also from this Torah portion, and is in:
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 8:20 “Like the nations which יהוה is destroying before you, so you are to perish, because you did not obey the voice of יהוה your Elohim.”
This is the first time we see this word being used to emphasise the resulting consequence for disobedience!
Just as we have considered the promise of eternal life, and the blessing and protection of Elohim, ‘because’ of obedience, now we see the reality of the sentence of death given, ‘because’ of disobedience!
The next time we see this word for ‘because’ being used, is in:
Shemuʼěl Aleph/1 Samuel 12:6 “Also, he has to repay fourfold for the lamb, because he did this deed and because he had no compassion.”
These were the words of king Dawiḏ, in response to Nathan the prophet who came to confront Dawiḏ for committing murder and adultery.
Nathan had come to the king and asked him, in the form of a parable, what should be done to the rich man who took the poor man’s lamb to feed the traveller. Dawiḏ did not realise that this was an accusation that was being directed toward him, for killing Uriyah the Ḥittite with the sword of the children of Ammon, and taking Uriyah’s wife that he took to be his own.
Dawiḏ’s response was clear – the one who did this should be punished because he did wrong, and then we see, in verse 10, the response of יהוה that was given to Dawiḏ, through Nathan:
Shemuʼěl Aleph/1 Samuel 12:10 “And now, the sword does not turn aside from your house, because you have despised Me, and have taken the wife of Uriyah the Ḥittite to be your wife.”
יהוה makes it very clear here to Dawiḏ – because Dawiḏ ‘despised’ יהוה, the sword would not turn aside from his house! Dawiḏ was told how his wives would be taken from him and that evil from his own house would rise up and his wives would be lain with, before all!
Aḇshalom, the wicked son of Dawiḏ, did this and we see in Shemuʼěl Aleph/1 Samuel 16:21-22 where Aḥithophel had a tent pitched for Aḇshalom on the top of Dawiḏ’s house, where he went into all of Dawiḏ’s concubines before the eyes of all Yisra’ĕl!
The resulting action of Dawiḏ’s disobedience brought about a defiling of his own house!
We can learn a great deal from this, as we are clearly given an example of what happens when you despise יהוה, by not guarding His commands always. We are to be on guard against any form of compromise through the flesh that may cause us to despise יהוה and His Word!
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘despised’ in this above verse is בָּזָה bazah – Strong’s H959 which means, ‘to despise, despicable, contempt, careless, to be vile, worthless’.
Another very well-known verse in which we find another Hebrew word that is translated as ‘despised’ is seen in:
Mal’aḵi/Malachi 1:6 “A son esteems his father, and a servant his master. And if I am the Father, where is My esteem? And if I am a Master, where is My fear? said יהוה of hosts to you priests who despise My Name. But you asked, ‘In what way have we despised Your Name?’”
In the above verse, from Mal’aḵi/Malachi, the answer to the question of how they were despising the Name of יהוה is given in the next verse:
Mal’aḵi/Malachi 1:7 “You are presenting defiled food on My altar. But you asked, ‘In what way have we defiled You?’ Because you say, ‘the table of יהוה is despicable.’”
This rebuke of how they were presenting defiled food and calling the table of יהוה despicable, is a clear rebuke as to how they were despising the Sabbaths and Feasts of יהוה, and contaminating their worship through a corrupted mix of pagan rooted sun-worship practices that had caused their festivals to become defiled and unclean before the eyes of Elohim, as they showed no regard for the true Table of יהוה.
In today’s terms, we can see this vivid display of many who say the table of יהוה is despicable, simply by their refusal to keep the Sabbaths and Feasts of יהוה, and substituting them with false man-driven traditions that assume a form of worship that clearly despises the Name and character of יהוה our Elohim!
The next time we see this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used, is in:
Tehillah/Psalm 19:11 “Also, Your servant is warned by them, in guarding them there is great reward.”
Here this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118is translated as ‘reward’, and further emphasises the resulting action of obedience, as the psalmist makes it clear in this Psalm that the ‘reward’ for guarding the right-rulings of Elohim is great! They not only warn you, but ‘because’ you guard them, they will protect you!
The next verse we see עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used, is in:
Tehillah/Psalm 40:15 “Let those who say to me, “Aha, aha!” be appalled at their own shame.”
The KJV version translates this word as ‘reward’, and here Dawiḏ is saying that those who disregard his word should have the resulting action of being appalled because of their shame!
Again, we see Dawiḏ saying this in:
Tehillah/Psalm 70:3 “Let those who say, “Aha, aha!” be turned back because of their shame.”
In both of these examples Dawiḏ is calling for the just reward for those who were seeking his life.
We can learn from this, as we recognise how many will falsely say wicked things about us and mock us and even speak of us as evil doers, simply for being obedient; and we know that their words will be turned back on them and they will stand ashamed in the Day of יהוה!
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 2:11-12 “Beloved ones, I appeal to you as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts which battle against the life, 12 having your behaviour among the gentiles good so that when they speak against you as evil-doers, let them, by observing your good works, esteem Elohim in a day of visitation.”
The next time we see this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used, is in the longest Psalm that resounds with echoing praise for the Torah and the desire to hold fast in obedience, by guarding to do it!
Tehillah/Psalm 119:112 “I have inclined my heart to do Your laws forever, to the end.”
Here the word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is translated as ‘to the end’, and clearly teaches us, once again the need to be a steadfast and faithful remnant that guards the commands always and forever.
The resulting action of inclining our heart to do the Torah, is that we are equipped to do so forever!
The next time we see this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used is in:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 22:4 “The reward of humility is the fear of יהוה, riches, and esteem and life.”
Here עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is translated as ‘the reward’, and again we are able to see the resulting action of true humility – and that is a proper fear of יהוה, with the assurance of life and life in abundance, which is what Messiah came to bring us!
The Hebrew word that is translated here, in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 22:4, as ‘humility’ is עֲנָוָה anavah – Strong’s H6038 and means, ‘humility, gentleness’, and comes from the root word עָנָה anah – Strong’s H6031 which means, ‘to be bowed down, afflicted, humbled’.
This carries the understanding of being ‘grounded’, as well as having the ability to ‘pay close attention’ and open one’s ears to hear!
It carries the concept of denying oneself and submitting to Elohim as you understand, and are aware of, one’s status before an Almighty Elohim who has appointed for us His Door of Appointment!
Ya’aqoḇ tells us clearly in:
Ya’aqoḇ/James 4:10 “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Master, and He shall lift you up.”
The one who is truly humble subjects himself to Elohim and Ya’aqoḇ also tells us, in Ya’aqoḇ/James 4:6, that Elohim resists the proud and gives favour to the humble!
As I have mentioned previously, on a number of occasions, favour (grace) is only extended by יהוה on the basis of His Covenants of Promise – and anyone who does not walk in, and stay in, His Covenants of Promise that they have been grafted into by the Blood of Messiah, by guarding to do what has been commanded, are not extended the favour of Elohim!
Walking in humility is expressed clearly as one fixes their eyes on the Truth and walks in it, not looking to one’s own ways, nor leaning on one’s own understanding!
We are told in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 3:34 that יהוה gives favour to the humble (עָנִי aniy – Strong’s H6041).
The Hebrew word עָנָה anah – Strong’s H6031 also carries the meaning of ‘giving an account or an answer’.
This carries the picture of the one who humbles himself and comes to give an account of what he has done.
This can give us the picture of ‘coming clean’, so to speak, and confessing our sin.
In order to do that, one has to be looking at the One to whom you are coming clean to, and herein lies a powerful lesson in the ancient pictographic lettering of this word when understood in regards to Yom Kippur.
In the ancient pictographic text, the Hebrew word עָנָה ‘anah’ H6031 looks like this:
Ayin – עָ:
The original pictograph for this letter is and represents the idea of ‘seeing and watching’, as well as ‘knowledge’. as the eye is the ‘window of knowledge’.
Nun – נָ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as , which pictures a ‘sprouting seed’ and gives the idea of continuation or an offspring or an heir, speaking of that which sprouts forth will be the heir of the promise of continuation, and represents one’s life expectancy.
Hey – הּ:
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as a man standing with his arms raised up and out as if pointing to something, and in essence carries the meaning of ‘behold’ as in when looking at something very great. It can also have the meaning to ‘breath’ or ‘sigh’ as when looking at a great sight and having your breath taken away so to speak! It also has the meaning of revelation or to reveal something by pointing it out.
When we understand the command for us to be ‘BUSY WITH’ OUR BEINGS, and ‘BE OCCUPIED OR BOWED DOWN AND HUMBLED’ before our High Priest and King, we are able to recognise, through these ancient pictographic symbols, the concept of fixing our eyes on Messiah, the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our faith.
The picture of the eye and the seed, gives us the meaning of an ‘EYE OF CONTINUANCE’, meaning that we are continue to keep our eyes fixed on the One who is to be praised, for He has covered and cleansed us in His Blood!
In speaking a severe warning, and a great woe, on those who are wise in their own eyes, and the mighty who drink wine and mix strong drinks, which is a metaphor for corruption and idolatry, we see in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 5:23 “who declare right the wrong for a bribe, and the righteousness of the righteous they turn aside from him!”
Here עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 is translated as ‘for’, and highlights a severe woe to the corrupt who declare the right wrong, for the reward of a bribe!
The twisted theologies of man declare the righteous as wrongdoers, ‘because’ of the reward they get from those they manipulate and control through their dogmas and vain traditions.
The last time we see this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 being used is in:
Amos 4:12 “Therefore I am doing this to you, O Yisra’ĕl. And because I do this to you, prepare to meet your Elohim, O Yisra’ĕl!”
Judgement against a corrupt Yisra’ĕl had been decreed and could have been avoided through repentance – yet they refused to do so, and they were going to be exiled for their lustful living and their hypocritical worship.
In their continued neglect to heed to His discipline of famine, drought, disease, defeat in war and devastating destruction, He tells Yisra’ĕl, that ‘because’ He does this they had better be prepared to meet Him… face to face!!! The reward or resulting action of a continued stubbornness and stiff-necked rebellion is that those who continue in lawlessness will meet Him face to face!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 7:9-10 “And you shall know that יהוה your Elohim, He is Elohim, the trustworthy Ěl guarding covenant and kindness for a thousand generations with those who love Him, and those who guard His commands, 10 but repaying those who hate Him to their face, to destroy them. He does not delay to do so with him who hates Him, He repays him to his face.”
I find that the last use of this word עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118, here in Amos 4:12, proclaims a clear warning of the resulting action of lawless compromise and disobedience, versus the resulting action of obedience as seen in the first use of this word, in the promises given to Aḇraham!
BECAUSE – which side of the ‘because’ will you find yourself, so to speak!!!
Because you guard the commands of Elohim, you shall have shalom and the promise of everlasting life, and the second death shall have no power over you… or… Because you neglected the need to guard His commands you will not enter into His rest and face the Judgement seat and sentence of the second death!
Let us now continue to go through this Torah portion – עֵקֶב eqeḇ – Strong’s H6118 – BECAUSE!
Not only will יהוה guard you with the covenant and the loving-commitment that He swore to our fathers, He will also ‘love’ us and ‘bless’ us and ‘increase’ us!
The greatest expression of love, is to stay true to your word!
The greatest expression of our love for Elohim, is to guard His commands and do them, as we promised we would do, when we said yes to the Ketuḇah or Marriage Covenant, given to us at Mount Sinai and then renewed, in the Blood of Messiah, and written upon our hearts, at Shaḇuoth/Feast of Weeks/Pentecost!
Yoḥanan/John 15:10 “If you guard My commands, you shall stay in My love, even as I have guarded My Father’s commands and stay in His love.”
Yoḥanan/John 14:21 “He who possesses My commands and guards them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I shall love him and manifest Myself to him.”
The Greek word used here for ‘possesses’ is – ἔχω echo – Strong’s G2192 which means, ‘to have, hold, consider, obtain, possess’ and expresses an active verb which can render the meaning, ‘to have (hold) in the hand, in the sense of wearing, to have (hold) possession of the mind (refers to alarm, agitating emotions, etc.), to hold fast keep’.
This word is also used of those joined to any one by the bonds of natural blood or marriage or friendship or duty or law etc. and can express the intensity of holding fast to or ‘clinging’ to something!
Well, when we understand this, it makes perfect sense here, that what יהושע is clearly saying is that to ‘possess’ His commands is to hold them fast and guard them!
And one cannot ‘guard’ them and not be doing them, as we certainly all know that to guard and do is exactly what is clearly seen as a repetitive theme, all throughout Scripture!
So therefore, to ‘stay’ in the love of Elohim, we must ‘possess’ and that means having a firm grip on the commands, which clearly implies a proper doing of what has been commanded!
The Hebrew root word that is used in verse 13 for ‘love’ is אָהֵב aheḇ – Strong’s H157 which means, ‘to love, show your love’ and it is an expression of choice in action rather than just an emotional feeling!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 8:17 “I love those who love me, and those who earnestly seek me do find me.”
He loves those who love Him – and a major part of loving Him is ‘seeking’ Him; because to love Him is to do what He has instructed us to!
So how will we know how to love Him if we do not seek out what His instructions are???
An interesting side note is that the numerical value for this word אָהֵב aheḇ – Strong’s H157, for love, is ‘8’ – which speaks of fullness, complete and everlasting!
The letter ‘אָ’ (aleph) has the numerical value of ‘1’, while the letter ‘הֵ’ (hey) is ‘5’ and the letter ‘ב’ (beyt) is ‘2’, equalling a total numerical value of 8!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 41:8 “But you, Yisra’ĕl, are My servant, Ya’aqoḇ, whom I have chosen, the descendants of Aḇraham My friend”
Yoḥanan/John 15:13-14 “No one has greater love than this: that one should lay down his life for his friends. 14 “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.”
Here in verse 8 of this chapter in Yeshayahu/Isaiah 41, we see that יהוה refers to Aḇraham as being one who ‘loved’ Him and this root word for ‘loved’, in the Hebrew, is אָהֵב aheḇ – Strong’s H157 meaning, ‘to love, dearly loved, friend, friends, lover’.
Here, this word is written in the “qal, active, pure noun participle”, which can also therefore render the intense love between two friends and so, we can see why so many translations actually translate this as ‘…Aḇraham my friend…’ and Messiah tells us that the greatest love anyone can have is to lay down his life for his friend!
This makes so much sense, in that יהוה expresses the greatest love any could by laying down His life, not only for His friend who loved Him – Aḇraham, but also for Aḇraham’s descendants, the chosen and called out children of Yisra’ĕl!
יהוה Himself took on the nature of flesh by bearing His Right, Outstretched Arm and proved His love for us by redeeming us through His Blood – He is our Redeemer and the Set-Apart One of Yisra’ĕl – He is our refuge whom shall we dread? We are His friends if we love Him… for Yoḥanan makes it clear for us what love for Elohim is:
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 5:3 “For this is the love for Elohim, that we guard His commands, and His commands are not heavy”
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘increase’ is רָבָה raḇah – Strong’s H7235 which means, ‘to be or become much, many or great, abundant’, and we recognise that this ability to grow and become great is the result of observing and keeping the commands of Elohim.
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘bless’ in verse 13 comes from the root word בָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 and means, ‘to abundantly bless’ and it literally carries the meaning, ‘to kneel or bow down, to show respect, to bring a gift to another while kneeling out of respect’.
What we can see here is that the love we see from the Father is wonderful and in His blessing us, we can, in a sense, see the picture of how He ‘bends His knee’ toward us, as a loving father would get down on his knee to speak tenderly and affectionately to his small child, coming down to his level and meeting him where he is at!
When a father comes down to embrace his son and bends the knee and looks his child in the eye, there is a great sense of comfort and security that comes over the child, knowing his father loves him and will protect him!
I am sure you can all picture this in your mind – and that is how our Heavenly Father ‘blesses’ us!
He bends His knee and comes down to our level and meets us face to face and this brings us great comfort and assurance of His steadfast love for us!
We can be sure that what He speaks to us He will do and so when He says that He will bless the fruit of the womb, the fruit of the land, grain, wine, oil, livestock – then He means it, and here is the promise for total care and provision!
This assurance of blessing clearly shows that there was no need for Yisra’ĕl to follow after the false pagan deities of fertility worship for fruitfulness and provision in the Land – they had the True Provider who would bless them if they guard His right-rulings!
In Bemiḏbar/Numbers 6:22-27 יהוה spoke to Mosheh and told him to tell Aharon how he was to bless the children of Yisra’ĕl, and by this יהוה would put His Name on us as He Himself would bless us.
In the Hebrew text, this blessing it is written as follows:
This can be transliterated as:
Yeḇareḵ’ḵa YAHWEH veyishmereḵa
Ya’er YAHWEH panav eyleyḵa viyḥunne’ḵa
Yissa YAHWEH panav eyleyḵa veyasem leḵa shalom
Let us take a closer look at the words of this ‘blessing’ and get a further understanding to it powerful meaning:
1 – BLESS – in Hebrew this is the word – בָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 and means, ‘to abundantly bless’ and literally carries the meaning, ‘to kneel or bow down, to show respect, to bring a gift to another while kneeling out of respect’.
2 – GUARD/KEEP – in the Hebrew this is the word שָׁמַר shamar – Strong’s H8104 – ‘keep watch, preserve, guard, protect’.
3 – FACE – In Hebrew this comes from the root word – פָּנִים panim or פָּנֶה paneh – Strong’s 6441 – ‘face, faces, appearance, presence’ and can also carry the understanding of the presence or wholeness of being.
4 – SHINE – in Hebrew this is the word אוֹר ‘or’ – Strong’s H215 – ‘light (noun) and give light or shine (verb) – bring illumination’.
5 – FAVOUR – in Hebrew this is the word חָנַן ḥanan – Strong’s H2603 – ‘merciful, favour’ and also carries the meaning of providing protection.
6 – GIVE – in Hebrew this is the word שׂוּם suwm – Strong’s H7760 – ‘to put, to place, to set; set down in a fixed and arranged place’
7 – PEACE – in Hebrew this is the word שָׁלוֹם shalom – Strong’s H7965 – ‘wholeness, completeness, soundness, welfare, peace, health, prosperity, well-being, safety, protection’, and is from the primitive root שָׁלֵם shalem – Strong’s H7999 which means, ‘to be complete or sound, rewarded, make full restitution’.
7 extremely powerful words that are contained in this blessing as commanded by יהוה that not only blesses us and puts His Name upon us, but also wonderfully expresses His marvellous love and compassion for us and what He does for us through His blessing us as He in a sense has ‘bowed down/ come down and given us the gift of life through His own as he promises to guard and protect us and keep us safe in Him.
This blessing in light of the understanding of the meaning of these 7 words could be expresses in English as follows:
יהוה shall come down to you presenting you gifts and will guard you with a hedge of protection.
יהוה shall illuminate the wholeness of His being toward you, bringing order and beautify you and He will give you love, comfort and sustenance.
יהוה shall lift up His wholeness of being and look upon you and He will set in place all you need to be whole and complete.
The ancient script has the Hebrew word for bless – בָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 pictured as:
Beyt – בָּ:
The ancient script has this letter as , which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.
Resh – רַ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief.
Kaph – ךְ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as – – which is a picture of an open palm of a hand and can symbolise that to which submission is given – ‘under the hand’
Once again, we are able to clearly see who it is who blesses us:
THE HOUSE/ASSEMBLY OF ELOHIM IS BLESSED AS THE HEAD, CHIEF, COMES AND EXTENDS HIS OPEN AND REVEALED HAND TO HIS OWN!
To be blessed above all peoples, is because we receive the Kingdom Rules of our Coming King and walk in them here and now!
And to realise that the Kingdom of Messiah is what we are to be proclaiming, we must go further than simply just hearing about the Kingdom – as His clear Kingdom instructions and right-rulings must define us – not only by ‘what we do’, but also define ‘who we are’!
To be a set-apart people, means being set-apart from the world and its ‘rules’ and being ‘marked’ by Our Master and Saviour’s clearly defined living instructions for set-apart living!
So many people today ‘claim’ to be ‘in’ Messiah, yet they do not follow His Kingdom principles and look just like the rest of the world as they do what the world does! It is a blessing to have His Kingdom Rules clearly laid out for us – for it separates us and identifies us with Him!
Yoḥanan/John 14:23-24 “יהושע answered him, “If anyone loves Me, he shall guard My Word. And My Father shall love him, and We shall come to him and make Our stay with him. 24 “He who does not love Me does not guard My Words. And the Word which you hear is not Mine but of the Father Who sent Me.”
Being blessed above all peoples also comes with the promise of fruitfulness:
Yoḥanan/John 15:5-8 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who stays in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit. Because without Me you are able to do naught! 6 “If anyone does not stay in Me, he is thrown away as a branch and dries up. And they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 “If you stay in Me, and My Words stay in you, you shall ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you. 8 “In this My Father is esteemed, that you bear much fruit, and you shall be My taught ones.”
With the clear blessing of Elohim, we are equipped to bear good fruit that lasts and no longer bear fruit of sin that causes shame!
Romiyim/Romans 6:20-22 “For when you were servants of sin, you were free from righteousness. 21 What fruit, therefore, were you having then, over which you are now ashamed? For the end thereof is death. 22 But now, having been set free from sin, and having become servants of Elohim, you have your fruit resulting in set-apartness, and the end, everlasting life.”
Having been set free from sin, we ought to be having the fruit of our lives resulting in complete set-apartness unto Elohim; yet is this the case? As we consider how our lives are to be overflowing with the abundant fruit of righteousness and peace, we need to allow the mirror of the Word to show us where our fruit is either lacking, or has become spoilt!
The Greek word that is translated as ‘fruit’ is καρπός karpos – Strong’s G2590 which means, ‘fruit, benefit, gain, harvest, produce’ and typically refers to fruit that has been plucked, rendering the figurative meaning of the labours, works or acts of those who have fitted themselves with every good work unto everlasting life.
What we can therefore clearly understand and establish is that our works of righteousness are vital in being evident in our lives, as we continue to produce much fruit, as a people who are living pure and undefiled set-apart lives.
Guarding His commands will protect us from the ‘diseases of Mitsrayim’, simply because we will guard the dietary laws, the sexual laws and cleansing laws, and no drinking of blood etc.!
When we refrain from what we must not do, then we have the assurance of being protected from the diseases of Mitsrayim!
While we do recognise that there are times when some sicknesses or ailments are used for יהוה’s esteem and are not necessarily the result of sin and disobedience:
Yoḥanan/John 9:3 “יהושע answered, “Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but that the works of Elohim might be made manifest in him.”
Yoḥanan/John 11:4 “But when יהושע heard, He said, “This sickness is not unto death, but for the esteem of Elohim, so that the Son of Elohim might be esteemed by it.”
What we can be sure of is that when we simply walk according to His instructions, we are promised that the diseases of Mitsrayim will not harm us.
Verse 16 – Your eye shall not pardon
This is very important for us to understand – we cannot through the ‘sight of our eyes’ pardon wickedness or lawlessness, simply because it becomes very hard to resist the cries of the needy who wilfully reject the Torah, as they use emotional manipulation to get what they want!
The Hebrew word that is translated here as ‘pardon’ comes from the root word חוּס ḥus – Strong’s H2347 which means, ‘to pity, to look upon with compassion, spare’, and what is being clearly emphasized here is the danger of overlooking evil!
This teaches us a vital lesson on our need to guard the Truth and not be swayed in any way by compromising standards that ‘seem’ acceptable by sight. Mosheh made it clear that Yisra’ĕl were to consume the peoples that יהוה would deliver over to them and no pardons would be accepted. Destroy what must be destroyed!!!
All too often people compromise their set-apartness by what they see with eyes that pardon away crookedness, possibly for the sake of keeping peace, yet we know that the Word commands us to show no partiality in right-ruling! Do not pardon sin! We are to walk by faith and not by sight!!
Qorintiyim Bet/2 Corinthians 5:7 “for we walk by belief, not by sight”
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 11:3-4 “and shall make Him breathe in the fear of יהוה. And He shall not judge by the sight of His eyes, nor decide by the hearing of His ears. 4 But with righteousness He shall judge the poor, and shall decide with straightness for the meek ones of the earth, and shall smite the earth with the rod of His mouth, and slay the wrong with the breath of His lips.”
יהושע will not ‘judge by the sight of His eyes’, but rather by the righteous right-ruling of His Word!!!
This does not mean that we are to be mean, but rather that we must be firm. We cannot overlook or wink at lawlessness and pretend we do not see it – we are to stand firm on the truth and not allow any compromise for any reason.
Often, we find today that there are some who ‘turn a blind eye’ to the lawlessness of their close families or colleagues in order to seemingly ‘keep the peace’ and here we are told not to do that. Our eye shall not pardon them and give them the impression that their lawless ways are acceptable!
This will certainly cause division in some families, which can be very painful and heart-breaking, yet we must not ‘turn a blind eye’ so to speak, lest we end up engaging in the lawless worship standards and compromise the set-apart living standards by which we are to lovingly abide in and be identified by as a remnant Bride who is making Herself ready!
Verse 18 – Remember!
It states in verse 17 that when we see these great nations and think that they are too big for us to overcome, then we are told in verse 18 to remember well what יהוה did to Pharaoh and Mitsrayim!
The phrase ‘Remember well’ in the Hebrew is written as follows – זָכֹר תִּזְכֹּר – ‘zaḵar tiz’kkar’ and what we see here is the root word זָכַר zaḵar – Strong’s H2142 being used twice, bringing emphasis on the need to remember!!!
In other words, it could be rendered – remember to remember – do not forget it!!!
And this is how we arm ourselves and not be afraid of that which seems too big for us to handle and conquer!
We are not to be afraid – and this “do not be afraid” is a command and is not just an emotional response; as being afraid can be a failure to act as a result of assuming the threat which you are facing is bigger and stronger than יהוה who fights for you!!!
How we guard ourselves from this crippling type of fear, is to ‘remember to remember’ and recognise how far He has brought us!
We were once enslaved in Mitsrayim and by the Mighty Right Hand and Outstretched Arm of יהוה we were delivered and brought out of the oppression of man-made dogmas and traditions that only enslave!
Tehillah/Psalm 105:5-6 “Remember His wonders which He has done, His miracles, and the right-rulings of His mouth, 6 O seed of Aḇraham His servant, Children of Ya’aqoḇ, His chosen ones!”
At the Feast of Pěsaḥ/Matzot (Passover/Unleavened Bread) we certainly ‘remember and recount’ the story of the deliverance of Yisra’ĕl from under the hand oppressive of Pharaoh, and we also partake of the cup and bread of Messiah once a year at the Pěsaḥ Meal, in remembrance of Him, and what He has done for us, delivering us from sin and death:
Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 11:23-26 “For I received from the Master that which I also delivered to you: that the Master יהושע in the night in which He was delivered up took bread, 24 and having given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat, this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” 25 In the same way also the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the renewed covenant in My blood. As often as you drink it, do this in remembrance of Me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the death of the Master until He comes.”
Once a year (as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup) we proclaim His death – we are commanded to remember this at the Feast of Pěsaḥ and Matzot as we have the meal of Lamb, bitter herbs and unleavened bread on the first night of Matzot, and partake of the bread and cup of Messiah! Without this remembrance we can have no part in Him!
Yoḥanan/John 6:53 “יהושע therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Aḏam and drink His blood, you possess no life in yourselves.”
While we eat this Meal once a year, what we are able to do every single day is to ‘remember to remember’ what He has done and be strengthened in the fact that we serve a Mighty and Awesome Elohim – יהוה of Hosts – and therefore of who should we be afraid!
We are to continually ‘bring to remembrance’ the clear fact that we serve a Living Elohim, Saviour, High Priest and King, who is seated on his Throne, and in doing so, we remember that we are His Bride that is to be making Herself ready for His return!
It is with this call to ‘remember’ in mind that I would like us to take a look at this root word זָכַר ‘zaḵar’ H2142, in its ancient pictographic form, which is pictured as follows:
Zayin – זְ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as , which is a mattock (a sharp digging tool such as an axe or pick) and carries the meaning of ‘a weapon or tool that cuts, farming instrument’. A mattock would be a tool that was also used to dig up the soil so that seed could be planted. This picture clearly pictures a tool that is used to work and therefore can also render for us the meaning of work or a work that is done, and more specifically, the harvest that is brought forth!
Kaph – כְ:
The ancient form of this letter is – meaning ‘the open palm of a hand’. The meaning behind this letter is ‘to bend and curve’ from the shape of a palm as well as ‘to tame or subdue’ as one has been bent to another’s will (under their hand), as an open hand symbolises submission. This also can picture for us a palm or palm branch from the curved palm shape. The hand also speaks of one’s work, or under whose hand you submit and obey!
Resh – ר:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief.
Our true life of praise unto יהוה, our Head, begins when we fear Him, for He is the beginning of our strength, and true separated praise entails a true fear of the One who is Chief over us!
As we consider this root word that is understood as ‘remember’, in its pictographic form, we are able to glean the following:
THE HARVEST WORKED BY OUR HEAD!
This too is something that we are to have a clear remembrance of, and that is: Our Head, יהושע Messiah, has worked the Harvest, so that we can be diligent workers on the Harvest, as we stay in Him and be found to be His trustworthy servants that are armed and awake in His Truth
Verse 20 – hornets
The word for hornets, in Hebrew, is צִרְעָה tsirah – Strong’s H6880 and comes from the same root as the word צָרַעַת tsara’ath – Strong’s H6883 which means, ‘leprosy’ from which is derived the denominative verb צָרַע tsara – Strong’s H6879 which means, ‘to be struck with leprosy, to be leprous’.
The word for hornet being closely linked to leprosy could be for the fact that the sting of a hornet leaves a mark on the flesh. Hornets can also represent that which brings to surface any evil that is hidden in the dark!
Verse 21 – do not be afraid
Again, the command to not be afraid is being stressed here – and it is because יהוה is in our midst – therefore we ought to live like it!!!
There is a twofold meaning, I believe that we are able to see here – one is, to not be afraid of those nations who are bigger and stronger, as it is יהוה who fights for us, while at the same time, I believe that, secondly, this can also be an encouragement, to not be afraid of the hornets that יהוה would send to destroy those who are left of the nations!
Why I say this, is that in Ḥazon/Revelation 9 we see a similar picture as given by the locusts that come upon the earth to harm men for 5 months. These locusts are commanded not to harm the grass of the field, nor any green matter or tree, but only those men who do not have the seal of Elohim upon their foreheads.
In other words, we who are ‘sealed’ need not be afraid of the locusts of Ḥazon/Revelation 9, and just as the hornets being spoken of here would destroy those of the nations that, they would not destroy the ground and the fruitfulness of it for יהוה promised Yisra’ĕl that He would bless the field; and so is strikingly similar to what we in the instructions given to the locusts of Ḥazon/Revelation.
We must not fear man, no matter how bigger they might seem in our eyes:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 10:28 “And do not fear those who kill the body but are unable to kill the being. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both being and body in Gehenna.”
Verse 22 – little by little
This verse is a great picture of the patience and protection of יהוה, as He shows great mercy and favour upon Yisra’ĕl by declaring that He would drive out the enemy little by little, rather than all at once.
If the enemy had been driven out all at once then the beasts of the filed would have become too numerous for them to handle; and Yisra’ĕl also needed to learn new farming skills and learn how to work the land, and by having the remnant of the nations in subjection to their rule for a time, they would be able to become well established in the skills that were practically needed to work the Land, יהוה’s Way!
I also believe that this is a wonderful picture of how patient יהוה is with us, when we get delivered from bondage to the enslaved rules and dogmas of man. There are certainly things that we are to stop immediately and as we learn more and more from His Torah, we are able to allow His Word to ‘drive out’ little by little those very things that should not occupy the life of a set-apart, chosen and royal child of the Most-High Elohim!
In Ma’asei/Acts 15 we see a similar principle being applied as the nations were seeking to follow the Truth and become grafted in to Yisra’ĕl, and were instructed to do the following:
Ma’asei/Acts 15:20-21 “but that we write to them to abstain from the defilements of idols, and from whoring, and from what is strangled, and from blood. 21 “For from ancient generations Mosheh has, in every city, those proclaiming him – being read in the congregations every Sabbath.”
4 things they were required to stop immediately:
1) stop idol worship
2) stop whoring
3) do not eat strangled animals
4) do not eat blood.
All of these 4 were pagan worship practices or forms of idolatry and then they were told that to learn how to be set-apart is to go to the Sabbath gathering each week, where the Torah (Mosheh) is read and learn.
Today, we could summarise this same instruction, for those who are coming out of Baḇelon, so to speak, as:
Stop idol worship, stop keeping Christmas and Easter, Stop Sun-day worship, stop eating pork and shellfish, stop using false titles and names and then, go every week to a Sabbath fellowship and learn what the Torah teaches – for then you will see how ‘little by little’ the worldly ways will be driven out of your life, further equipping you in the Word, to live a set-apart life unto Messiah!
In verse 23 we can learn and see that, as we walk in the Truth, יהוה will deliver over to you those things that are to be driven out of your life, and they will through obedience be completely destroyed – that which once occupied your life would be destroyed by His living and active Word that is sharper than a double-edged sword!
What we can also see from these words is a clear prophetic picture of how יהוה will ultimately destroy with a great destruction all those who are not of Him and take great vengeance on those who do not know Elohim:
Yo’ěl/Joel 1:15 “Alas for the day! For the day of יהוה is near, and it comes as destruction from the Almighty.”
Tas’loniqim Bět/1 Thessalonians 1:6-10 “since Elohim shall rightly repay with affliction those who afflict you, 7 and to give you who are afflicted rest with us when the Master יהושע is revealed from heaven with His mighty messengers, 8 in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know Elohim, and on those who do not obey the Good News of our Master יהושע Messiah, 9 who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Master and from the esteem of His strength, 10 when He comes to be esteemed in His set-apart ones and to be admired among all those who believe in that Day, because our witness to you was believed.”
Verse 24 is a great encouragement as we are reminded that in Messiah, we are more than overcomers:
Romiyim/Romans 8:37 “But in all this we are more than overcomers through Him who loved us.”
Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 15:57 “But thanks to Elohim who gives us the overcoming through our Master יהושע Messiah.”
Verses 25-26 – Keep your house clean
These verses make it very clear – destroy any form or image of idol worship! The reason why they were commanded to burn the idols, was to keep anyone from going after them in order to seek the gold and silver that may have been on them.
When we look at this today, we can understand the words of Ya’aqoḇ in:
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:27 “Clean and undefiled religion before the Elohim and Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.”
He is saying here that we are to “keep clean” and make sure that we do not get the stain of the word on our garments!
Running after worldly wealth and riches and coveting that which the world has to offer will defile you and cause you to end up worshiping the idols of the nations – which can come in many shapes and forms!
What we must understand is that there are many idols that are crafted today and given to people as gifts, and this is how the enemy infiltrates the houses of so many people!
We must be careful what we allow into our homes, as it is very clear here in verse 26, telling us to not bring an abomination into our house – we are to loath and hate it!
Often, there may be statues or images or artefacts that people have in their home, which they either obtained as a gift or heirloom, to which they attach much sentimental value – while in the eyes of יהוה it is clearly an abomination and represents that which is, at its root, a form of pagan idolatry!
When many realise this, they think that by selling them they are cleaning house, yet this is simply a ‘covering it with gold and silver’.
We are to destroy them so that they cannot be used or worshipped again, no matter how expensive or precious it may have been in the eyes of the families’ previous generations.
Cleaning our house of all that is defiled is a necessary exercise and is vitally important for all Yisra’ĕl to take heed of this clear instruction.
This will include getting rid of books or videos or games that may have some link or attachment to witchcraft or magic or even freemasonry.
We read in Ma’asei/Acts how the people brought all their books and burned them, after confessing their sins and cleaning up their lives:
Ma’asei/Acts 19:18-19 “And many who had believed came confessing and declaring their deeds. 19 And many of those who had practised magic brought their books together, burning them before all. And they reckoned up the value of them, and found it to be fifty thousand pieces of silver.”
Now, to put this into perspective, we must understand that this was a huge burning.
A day’s wages for one person in those days was a piece of silver, and the value of these books that were burned amounted to 50 000 pieces of silver, and if one calculates that into daily wages we can deduce that it would be the equivalent of being well over a 150 years wages for an individual.
Now, while many would say that this is not a practical way of estimating, I simply wanted to highlight that which was burned, by however many people, carried a very great monetary value; which the people willingly burned as they understood the Besorah of Messiah.
Today, many have a great number of books and other materials, that are abominable in the eyes of יהוה, yet they are unwilling to burn them up.
What we must also recognise here, is that the following verse in Ma’asei/Acts 19, tells us that the Word of the Master was growing mightily and prevailing; and I think that this is an important lesson for us today.
When the true worshippers who worship the Father in Spirit and Truth actually take great heed to these instructions and destroy all forms of idols from their homes and clean up house, so to speak, then we will see the Word of the Master growing mightily and prevailing!
Too many today are unable to ‘give up’ that which is supposed to be burned and destroyed, and יהושע says in:
Luqas/Luke 14:33 “So, then, everyone of you who does not give up all that he has, is unable to be My taught one.”
What we can also learn from ‘keeping our houses’ clean is that in light of us being the Temple of the Set-Apart Spirit of Elohim, we must also realise that we are not to have any form of idolatry on our hearts.
By that I mean that we must not covet what others have, or seek after the things of the world that will only enslave us.
There are many things that can become a form of idol worship in the hearts of man! That includes anything that they place as being more important to them than Elohim – be it their career, their social status, their possessions, their wealth and monetary value, their relationships, or even being ‘star struck’ by celebrities!
Keep your house clean, for if you do not – you risk the danger of getting even more infected as a result of nor ‘guarding’ the Truth:
Luqas/Luke 11:24-26 “When the unclean spirit goes out of a man, he goes through dry places, seeking rest. And finding none, he says, ‘I shall return to my house from which I came.’ 25 “And when he comes, he finds it swept and decorated, 26 then he goes and takes with him seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter and dwell there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first.”
KEEP YOUR HOUSE CLEAN!
In verse 26 we are told not to bring in any abominable thing into our homes, lest we end up be accursed like it, and the way we can guard ourselves from this is to utterly loath and utterly hate it!
People will not bring something into their homes that the hate!
The Hebrew word that is translated here as ‘utterly loath’ comes from the root word שָׁקַץ shaqats – Strong’s H8262 which means, ‘detest, make detestable, utterly detest’.
It is used twice in a row here and is written as follows שַׁקֵּץ תְּשַׁקְּצֶנּוּ – ‘shaqeyts t’shaqtsenu’
Both are written in the ‘piel’ form which renders an intentional or intensive action, which is repeated here to express the urgency of the action!
This word is used in Wayyiqra/Leviticus 11:11, which tells us that the sea creatures that have no fins and scales are not food for us and are to be an abomination to us!!!
This is very clear – do not bring them into your home…!
The word used here in verse 26 for ‘utterly hate’ is תָּעַב ta’aḇ – Strong’s H8581 which means, ‘to abhor, despise, reject’.
These abominable things are ‘accursed’ which is the Hebrew word חֵרֶם ḥerem – Strong’s H2764 which means, ‘devoted thing, accursed, things devoted to destruction, something banned’, and comes from the root verb חָרַם ḥaram – Strong’s H2763 means ‘to ban, utterly destroy’ as well as ‘devote to Elohim, which (once given) must then be destroyed so there will be no human use made of it’, and carries the understanding of that which becomes off limits and is utterly destroyed.
The instruction is very clear here – that which is not allowed, do not have in your home!!!
That which is ‘under the ban’ and abominable in יהוה’s eyes must be abominable in our eyes too and be off limits, without the slightest consideration of letting it enter our home!
What ‘stuff’ have you allowed in your home, that is clearly an abominable thing in יהוה’s eyes?
Keep your house clean!!!
This chapter is primarily a warning against pride and a spirit if independence.
After being warned to have no idols in their house, they were also warned against falling into pride and forgetting יהוה, especially after they would enjoy the fruitfulness of the land!
Mosheh is very clear – “guard to do” – EVERY command so that you live and increase and possess!
Remember that you were led through the Wilderness by יהוה – to humble you and prove you and to see if you will actually guard His commands or not!
Ya’aqoḇ/James 4:6 “But He gives greater favour. Because of this He says, “Elohim resists the proud, but gives favour to the humble.”
Ya’aqoḇ/James 4:10 “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Master, and He shall lift you up.”
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 5:6 “Humble yourselves, then, under the mighty hand of Elohim, so that He exalts you in due time”
We need the ‘Wilderness’ in order to learn to ‘hear’ the voice of Elohim and need to be humbled and learn that we are to submit to His ways and walk humbly before Elohim.
The Torah has a great effect in destroying any form of pride and hardness of heart that we may have picked up from the world and its enslaved systems.
Many today want to ‘skip’ the Wilderness and jump straight from Mitsrayim into the Promised Land, so to speak, and this cannot happen!!!
One of the primary reasons to remember the Wilderness is to remember the Words that were given in the Wilderness – that is – the instructions of Elohim!
Because, if we conveniently ‘forget’ the Wilderness, which is what so many today have done and teach others to do likewise, then pride will certainly set in in a big way!
Those who claim that they do not have to walk in the Torah, make their claim with arrogance and are so self-centred that they have no clue of what true set-apart living, that the Wilderness journey teaches us, as we humble ourselves at the Master’s feet and learn to do all He commands!
To not remember what יהוה has done will lead to rebellion and pride – the very thing that our fathers had done, and by their not ‘remembering’, caused us to walk in sin/lawlessness – and now, all we can do is repent, humble ourselves in the sight of the Master, submit to Him and walk in His ways – then we would be able to resist the evil one:
Tehillah/Psalm 106:6-7 “We have sinned with our fathers, we have acted perversely, we have done wrong. 7 Our fathers in Mitsrayim did not understand Your wonders; they did not remember Your many kindnesses, but rebelled by the sea, the Sea of Reeds.”
Pride is what causes so many to not ‘seek’ Elohim and so we find many today who are not ‘seeking’ His Kingdom and His righteousness and as a result they forsake the True Elohim!
Tehillah/Psalm 10:4 “In the pride of his face the wrongdoer does not seek Him, in all his thoughts there is no Elohim!”
To prove you:
The other reason for the Wilderness journey is to ‘prove’ us. The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘prove’ comes from the root word נָסָה nasah – Strong’s H5254 which means, ‘to test, try, proved’
Dawiḏ called upon Elohim to prove him and know his heart –and this is the kind of boldness and humility we need to have!
Tehillah/Psalm 26:2 “Examine me, O יהוה, and prove me; try my kidneys and my heart.”
Most people today do not want to be examined as they certainly have a lot of junk to hide.
The Word of Elohim ‘proves’ us and we need it to so that we can get all the ‘dross’ out of us and be brought forth and refined silver.
Tehillah/Psalm 12:6 “the Words of יהוה are clean Words, silver tried in a furnace of earth, refined seven times.”
Tehillah/Psalm 66:10 “For You, O Elohim, have proved us; You have refined us as silver is refined.”
Zeḵaryah/Zechariah 13:9 “And I shall bring the third into fire, and refine them as silver is refined, and try them as gold is tried. They shall call on My Name, and I shall answer them. I shall say, ‘This is My people,’ while they say, ‘יהוה is my Elohim.’”
It is through His ‘proving and trying’ us that we shall remember what He has done and learn to call upon His Name! The reason why His Name was “forgotten”, and not called upon, is simply because the pride of men’s hearts chose not to ‘remember’ the Wilderness!
He proves us in order to see what is upon our hearts – now we know what is supposed to be upon our hearts – His Torah – yet if so, many are not guarding and doing His Torah, then it is obvious that His Word is not on their heart!
Are we guarding his commands or not – that is what the proving of יהוה establishes very clearly!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 17:3 “A refining pot is for silver and a furnace for gold, but יהוה tries the hearts.”
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 1:7 “in order that the proving of your belief – much more precious than gold that perishes, and proven by fire – might be found to result in praise and respect and esteem at the revelation of יהושע Messiah”
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:2-4 “My brothers, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, 3 knowing that the proving of your belief works endurance. 4 And let endurance have a perfect work, so that you be perfect and complete, lacking in naught.”
So many allow the pride of life to cause them to avoid any form of proving and testing of their hearts by Elohim through His Word, and in the process, deceive themselves into one of the most claimed phrases that is used to justify their rebellion and lawlessness, and that is that many say, “Oh but HE knows my heart”.
What many do not realise here, is that what they are saying is very true indeed, yet they are not saying it with the mind-set of humility and submission to do what His Word commands, but rather, they use it as a twisted means of thinking that whatever they do is ok, as they assume that יהוה will accept their Torahless lifestyle!
This following verse is the answer to all those who arrogantly use the pathetic excuse of their lack of obedience to his commands of … He knows my heart:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 17:9-10 “The heart is crooked above all, and desperately sick – who shall know it? 10 “I, יהוה, search the heart, I try the kidneys, and give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.”
Now, to the lawless (those who claim that the Torah is no longer applicable) I say – you are absolutely correct in saying that יהוה knows your heart – and that being the case I would urge you to seriously consider the implications of that very truth! He tries our hearts to see if we guard His commands or not – and to the lawless He will say:
Luqas/Luke 13:27 “But He shall say, ‘I say to you I do not know you, where you are from. Depart from Me, all you workers of unrighteousness.”
We need to seek His Way and learn to hear His instructions and guard to do them.
So many today plainly say no, just as the rebellious who went before us, when they were told to ask for the ‘ancient way’:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 6:16 “Thus said יהוה, “Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where the good way is, and walk in it; and find rest for yourselves. But they said, ‘We do not walk in it.’”
How sad it is that we see so many stubborn and prideful people simple saying the same thing… “We do not walk in it”.
Look at the verse that follows:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 6:17-19 “And I raised up watchmen over you, and said, ‘Listen to the sound of the ram’s horn!’ But they said, ‘We do not listen.’ 18 “Therefore hear, you nations, and know, O congregation, what is upon them! 19 “Hear, O earth! See, I am bringing evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not listened to My words, nor My Torah – and they rejected it.”
There are many denominations in Christianity today who will ‘recite’ the Laws of יהוה as a religious duty, while they clearly do not walk in them; and they lay claim to the Covenant Promises while they do not walk in the conditions of the Covenant – and יהוה says to them:
Tehillah/Psalm 50:16-17 “But to the wrong Elohim said, “What right have you to recite My laws, or take My covenant in your mouth, 17 while you hated instruction and cast My Words behind you?”
Simply ‘reciting’ His commands while not walking in them is WRONG… His commands are to be in our hearts (which He tries in order to see if we will guard them) and in our mouths in order to do it!
For many it is simply only upon their lips and is far from their hearts – and His refining Word will prove it!
Marqos/Mark 7:6 “And He answering, said to them, “Well did Yeshayahu prophesy concerning you hypocrites, as it has been written, ‘This people respect Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me.”
The way to guard against pride is to humble ourselves under the teaching of our Master and Saviour and follow in His steps, guarding His commands!
He brought Yisra’ĕl to a place of hunger and thirst and need – and He supplied their needs!!!
The test would be whether they would truly hunger and thirst for righteousness or not!
Mattithyahu/Matthew 5:6 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, because they shall be filled.”
They were fed with manna – a food that they nor their fathers had known; and what we see happening in these days is this cycle of events happening again; as יהוה has delivered us from bondage to the enslavement of man-made traditions and dogmas and the commands of men that we had been taught, He has led us out and brought us to a place of hunger – and He has given us food that we had not known before under the veil of deceit and lies.
We are eating of His Good Bread – His Truth is being fed to us in our Wilderness sojourning, and this pure Truth that we are ‘eating’ today our fathers never knew; and we are learning more and more that we cannot live without His Bread from Heaven – we cannot live without יהושע Messiah, for He is the Bread of Life!
We cannot live on bread alone – but by EVERY Word that comes from the mouth of יהוה.
Those who claim that the Torah and Prophets and Writings of the Tanak (O.T.) are not applicable, have sadly missed this very vital truth – we live by EVERY Word that comes from the mouth of יהוה – His Torah is the life-giving Bread for us and Messiah is The Word of יהוה made flesh.
To reject His Torah, is to reject His Bread and that is to reject His salvation and deliverance for us, through the Life, death and resurrection of Messiah.
When יהושע was tempted in the Wilderness He used the Word to rebuke the devil:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 4:4 “But He answering, said, “It has been written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of יהוה.’”
Luqas/Luke 4:4 “But יהושע answered him, saying, “It has been written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of Elohim.’”
We need our daily bread – we need our ‘manna’ each and every day, and our hearts will be tried in this to see whether we keep His commands or not:
Shemoth/Exodus 16:4 “And יהוה said to Mosheh, “See, I am raining bread from the heavens for you. And the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day, in order to try them, whether they walk in My Torah or not.”
As we seek and walk daily in Messiah, we are promised His provision and protection.
We are to seek Him first and all will be added.
Mattithyahu/Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the reign of Elohim, and His righteousness, and all these matters shall be added to you.”
When יהושע told us in Mattithyahu/Matthew 6 to not worry about what we will eat, or wear or where we will sleep, He was alluding to these words in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy.
What we must also recognise is that we are to be seeking Him first in all things. If any of the Yisra’ĕlites went out too late to gather their daily manna, they would have not got any, as the sun would have melted that which was not gathered away!
This pictures for us the need to be getting up early and seeking Him first!
When we are told that their garments did not wear out nor did their feet swell, we can learn a great deal from this.
Their garments are a picture for us of our ‘works’, as we understand that we have been given ‘garments of righteousness’ and their ‘feet’ picture for us our ‘walk’.
As long as we are ‘seeking Him and His righteousness’ – and eat His manna daily, allowing it to give us life and direction for our steps, then we will be equipped to walk humbly in righteousness and not grow tired or weary and not become puffed up in pride.
Swollen feet picture a pride filled, stubborn and rebellious walk; and worn out garments picture the working of unrighteousness!
The way we ‘flesh out’ the commandments in each situation will reveal whether or not our garments of righteousness and praise are clean and undefiled and whether or not our feet are of peace, as we walk in the Truth and are not swelled up in pride and rebellion!
Discipline shows us that יהוה loves us:
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:5-13 “And you have forgotten the appeal which speaks to you as to sons, “My son, do not despise the discipline of יהוה, nor faint when you are reproved by Him, 6 for whom יהוה loves, He disciplines, and flogs every son whom He receives.” 7 If you endure discipline, Elohim is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom a father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without discipline, of which all have become sharers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. 9 Moreover, we indeed had fathers of our flesh disciplining us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they indeed disciplined us for a few days as seemed best to them, but He does it for our profit, so that we might share His apartness. 11 And indeed, no discipline seems pleasant at the time, but grievous, but afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. 12 So, strengthen the hands which hang down and the weak knees, 13 and make straight paths for your feet, lest the lame be turned aside, but instead, to be healed.”
Tehillah/Psalm 94:12-13 “Blessed is the man You discipline, O Yah, and instruct out of Your Torah, 13 to give him rest from the days of evil, until the pit is dug for the wrong.”
The Hebrew word that is used here for ‘discipline’ comes from the root verb יָסַר yasar – Strong’s H3256 which means, ‘to discipline, admonish, correct, teach’.
The noun ‘discipline’, that is derived from this root verb, is מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148 which means, ‘discipline, chastening, correction, reproof, punishment, warning’.
Mishlĕ/Proverbs speaks of discipline with the emphasis on instruction, and to answer the question of how discipline is administered, we can see in:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 22:15 “Folly is bound up in the heart of a child; the rod of discipline drives it far from him.”
The word מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148 is used 50 times in Scripture, and of those 50 times, we see it being used in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 30 times, hence our clear understanding of how Mishlĕ/Proverbs carries a great and important theme of the discipline of wisdom that is needed in our lives!
There is certainly great wisdom in true discipline!
True wisdom accepts the discipline and instruction of יהוה, and sadly there are many today who claim to love Elohim and claim to be followers of the Master, and will even recite many verses contained in the Covenants of Promise, while they so easily discard the need to walk in the Torah of Elohim, and quickly cast aside His clear instructions!
Tehillah/Psalm 50:16-17 “But to the wrong Elohim said, “What right have you to recite My laws, or take My covenant in your mouth, 17 “While you hated instruction and cast My Words behind you?”
The Hebrew word used here for ‘instruction’ is מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148! In other words, many will talk the talk, yet hate the walk, or rather hate the needed discipline required to live true set-apart lives, and will quickly cast the word of Elohim behind them, instead of letting it be a light for their path ahead of them!
At the beginning of Mishlĕ/Proverbs we are told straight up, in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 1:2-3 that these proverbs of Shelomoh are for knowing wisdom and discipline, and for receiving the discipline of wisdom, and in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 1:7 we are told that fools despise wisdom and discipline!
The Greek word used in the LXX (Septuagint) for ‘discipline’ is παιδεία paideia – Strong’s G3809 which means, ‘the repairing of a child, training, discipline’.
It is used 6 times in the Renewed Writings (N.T.), 4 of which is used in Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12 which deals with our need, as children of the Most-High, to accept the much-needed discipline of a Loving Father!
It is also used in Sha’ul’s letter to Timotiyos and translated as ‘instruction’ in:
Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All Scripture is breathed by Elohim and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for setting straight, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of Elohim might be fitted, equipped for every good work.”
We need the Word to instruct us in righteousness; and to despise the instruction and discipline of the Word is foolish, and as mentioned already – fools die for lack of discipline!
The Greek word that is used for a ‘taught one’ or ‘disciple’ of Messiah is μαθητής mathētēs – Strong’s G3101 which means, ‘disciple, pupil, student, taught one or one who is learning’, which comes from the word μανθάνω manthanō – Strong’s G3129 which means, ‘learn by use, practice’ and the basic meaning of this Greek word is understood as, ‘to experience’, and the use of this word implies an intellectual concern, which can therefore also render for us the understanding of, ‘seek to experience’ or, ‘learn to know’; and this word is also used in the Greek language with the understanding of, ‘learning skills under instruction’.
This word comes from the root μαθ- math which means, ‘to learn, educated, receive instruction’.
A true ‘disciple’ of our Master and Elohim, is one who is ‘disciplined’ and learns by receiving instruction and taking heed to walk in it! Many may claim to be disciples of Messiah, yet they clearly lack the ‘discipline of separation’.
As we look at this word for ‘discipline’ – מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148 in the ancient pictographic lettering, we are able to glean a better understanding of our need to be a disciplined people!
In the ancient pictographic alphabet, this Hebrew word for ‘discipline’ – מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148, looks like this:
Mem – מ:
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as ‘water’, and also carries the meaning of ‘chaos’ (from the storms of the sea) and can also picture that which is mighty or massive as well as the unknown. We are also able to understand this letter as representing the nations, for the nations are often likened to the seas in Scripture. Knowing this letter represents ‘water’, we are also able to see how this can render for us the meaning of ‘washing’ or ‘cleansing’.
Waw/Vav – וּ:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is a ‘peg’ or ‘tent peg’, which was used for securing or tying the tent or other items. The possibility of it having a Y-shape is to show that it prevents the rope from slipping off. The root meaning of this letter is ‘to add, secure or hook’. It is by the work of Messiah, in His own Blood, that has secured for us His Covenants of promise, to which we are added to; and His righteousness stands forever secured in Him!
Samek – סָ:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is a thorn and has the meanings of ‘pierce and sharp’ and can also carry the meaning of ‘a shield’, as thorn bushes were used by shepherds to build a wall to enclose their flock in the night against the attack of predators. Another meaning would be ‘to grab hold of’ as a thorn is a seed that clings to hair and clothing.
The Word of Elohim is sharper than a doubled edged sword and when we find that we do not grab hold of His word and allow His Word to be our shield of faith, we may find ourselves being pierced through with sin and compromise! Our praise we have for our Master is that in Him we are upheld forever, for He is the shield of our Help, as He Himself took the crown of thorns upon His head, bearing our sin and shame that we may be found to be shielded in Him! It can also give a meaning of ‘turning’, for it is the thorn that turns us away from danger and to that which is secure.
Resh – ר:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief. Our true life of praise unto יהוה, our Head, begins when we fear Him, for He is the beginning of our strength, and true separated praise entails a true fear of the One who is Chief over us!
When we look at these letters in their ancient pictographic form, we are able to clearly see what true discipline entails, as we are to turn away from all wickedness and turn to our Head and Master; and to do so takes great discipline. For:
IT IS THROUGH THE DISCIPLINED CONTINUAL WASHING OF WATER BY THE WORD THAT SECURES AND ESTABLISHES US, THAT WE ARE ENABLED TO TURN OUR EYES TO OUR MASTER AND GRAB HOLD OF HIS WORD!
True discipline for a true taught one of the Master, involves a committed fixing of one’s eyes on Him!
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:1-2 “We too, then, having so great a cloud of witnesses all around us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us, 2 looking to the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our belief, יהושע, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the stake, having despised the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of Elohim.”
In a nutshell, we could best understand this term for discipline, in the Hebrew, מוּסָר musar – Strong’s H4148 – as a term that clearly emphasises our need to be constantly turning our head/eyes to our True Head – and this we do by allowing the Word to wash us and establish us as a true disciplined disciple/taught one of Messiah!
Let me ask you – how disciplined are you?
What do you set your eyes upon each and every day, as you sojourn here as ambassadors of the Coming Reign?
In your walk of faith, are you continually turning your head to The Master?
By that I mean, are you continually turning your attention and thoughts and actions to the One whom you should be following, or are the things of the world and the lusts of the flesh and the lust of the eyes taking your attention away from the needed discipline of separation?
When you are confronted with situations, circumstances, conversations or dealings with the world, are you able to have the discipline of separation active in your life, or do you find yourself subtly being conformed to the standards of others, instead of shining the light of set-apartness by being transformed by the renewing of your mind through the Word?
This picture of being a son that is disciplined, is a very powerful picture of the great love יהוה has for us, and as we look at another couple of verses, we can see the wonder of His great mercy and love over us who are now called sons and no longer slaves!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 29:15 “A rod and reproof give wisdom, but a child unrestrained brings shame to his mother.”
This verse speaks a great deal of being led and trained by the word! Sha’ul tells Timotiyos:
Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All Scripture is breathed by Elohim and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for setting straight, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of Elohim might be fitted, equipped for every good work.”
The ‘rod and reproof’ are symbolic analogies for the Torah and instructions/commands/right-rulings of Elohim; and a continued theme we are able to see clearly in Scripture is the ‘parental figure’ of the Word over us, which is often expressed as the discipline of a father and torah of a mother.
Now, when this Proverb tells us that the discipline of the Word gives us wisdom, and the ‘unrestrained’ child brings shame to his mother, we can see the meaning being clear, in that those who reject the need to be taught, trained and disciplined, by the Torah of Elohim, are unrestrained and lawless and bring shame.
We read further in this Proverb:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 29:17-21 “Discipline your son, and he brings you rest and delight to your life. 18 Where there is no vision, the people are let loose, but blessed is he who guards the Torah. 19 A servant is not disciplined by words; though he understands, he does not respond. 20 Have you seen a man hasty in his words? There is more expectancy for a fool than for him. 21 He who deals tenderly with his servant from youth, has him as a son in the end.”
This carries great insight for us in understanding the mind-set of those who do not understand the joy of being true sons (and daughters) of Elohim. They refuse to be ‘disciplined’ in guarding the commands, and while many may even hear the words and understand them, they do not respond to them!
How many times have you had someone say to you that they agree with all you tell them regarding the Torah, and the clear need to keep the Sabbath, yet they themselves do not respond in their actions and remains disobedient?
Here in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 29:21 we are told that a servant that is dealt tenderly by His Master has him as a son in the end!!!
The servant becomes the son!
Messiah tells us in:
Yoḥanan/John 15:15 “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing. But I have called you friends, for all teachings which I heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
No longer servants…. But friends!!!
This does in no way mean that we now do not serve as faithful servants and disregard the commands… on the contrary, we now have an even greater responsibility, as sons and heirs of the promise in Messiah:
Galatiyim/Galatians 4:6-7 “And because you are sons, Elohim has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying, “Abba, Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, also an heir of Elohim through Messiah.”
Just as a servant was set free in the 7th year, year of release, and if he wanted to stay then his ear was pierced by an awl to the doorpost and he became a bondservant forever, so too do we who have been released from bondage to sin, and are no longer ‘slaves to sin’ having been washed in the Blood of Messiah, choose to ‘remain in Him’ and have our ears ‘pierced’ so to speak as we ‘hear, guard’ and do His Word, and are therefore His forever, and become a ‘son’ of the House; and therefore continue to live according to the ‘rules of the House’ as faithful sons, who are disciplined by a father when they step out of line!
Therefore, you shall guard the commands of יהוה and fear Him!!! It is all about the fear of יהוה, and all that He leads us through, tries us with and disciplines us for – is to fear Him and guard His ways; because then we will walk in safety and the fullness of His shalom and not be in want!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 33:6 “And He shall be the trustworthiness of your times, a wealth of deliverance, wisdom and knowledge. The fear of יהוה – that is His treasure.”
When we are walking in the fear of יהוה then we will begin to truly recognise that true fear of יהוה will cause us to be stable and steadfast, even when the world and its systems begin to crumble!
Please see sermon notes on a message called, “THOSE FEARING ELOHIM, LISTEN!” (an overview of what ‘fearing Elohim’ means) under the ‘sermons 2011/2012’ menu on our site (https://atfotc.com) or by clicking on the following link:
Verse 11-17 – Be on guard
One of the most frequent themes that we find in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy is the need to be on guard, which speaks clearly to us that we are to be awake and watchful!
What is critical here is that we are always to be on guard, especially when it is going well!!!
In the preceding verses, they were told that they were being brought into a land of plenty and there would be no lack, and then the command to be on guard!
So many people today let down their guard when things are going well and they let their obedience slip and begin to assume that they have achieved their success on their own, and this is where we have to keep a firm grip on the Truth!
‘Be on guard’ is a command, and not heeding it, could cause one to ‘forget’ יהוה, and to forget someone, is possibly one of the greatest insults one can give, and here, by not guarding the commands, it is clear that this danger lurks at the hearts and minds of the lazy and wicked, who are clearly forgetting Elohim!
When the provision and protection of יהוה is taken for granted and eventually forgotten, then people trust in their own abilities and ways assuming that they are able to lead their own lives by their own uniquely crafted standards of compromise – and this is exactly what the abominations of Yerushalayim was, and what we still see in so many today:
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 16:10-15 “And I dressed you in embroidered work and gave you sandals of leather. And I wrapped you in fine linen and covered you with silk. 11 “And I adorned you with ornaments, and I put bracelets on your wrists, and a chain on your neck. 12 “And I put a ring on your nose, and earrings in your ears, and a crown of adorning on your head. 13 “Thus you were adorned with gold and silver, and your dress was of fine linen, and silk, and embroidered cloth. You ate fine flour, and honey, and oil. And you were exceedingly pretty, and became fit for royalty. 14 “And your name went out among the nations because of your loveliness, for it was perfect, by My splendour which I had put on you,” declares the Master יהוה. 15 “But you trusted in your own loveliness, and whored because of your name, and poured out your whorings on everyone passing by who would have it.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 30:8-9 “Remove falsehood and a lying word far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me my portion of bread; 9 lest I become satisfied and deny You, and say, “Who is יהוה?” And lest I be poor, and steal, and seize the Name of my Elohim.”
The result of forgetting יהוה we can see from:
Hoshěa/Hosea 2:8-9 “And she did not acknowledge that I gave her grain, and new wine, and oil, and increased her silver and gold which they prepared for Ba’al. 9 “Therefore I shall turn back and shall take my grain in its time and My new wine in its season, and I shall take away My wool and My linen covering her nakedness.”
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 44:21 “Remember these matters, O Ya’aqoḇ, and Yisra’ĕl, for you are My servant! I have formed you, you are My servant, O Yisra’ĕl, do not forget Me!”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:5 “Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, and do not turn away from the words of my mouth.”
DO NOT FORGET = DO NOT LET YOUR GUARD DOWN!
Remember who it is who gives you the power to get wealth!
This verse is often misquoted in many marketing strategies of the world, as they try to catch many in buying in to their schemes of making money and twist these words to their own destruction!
While it is true, that it is יהוה who gives us the ability to get wealth, what we must recognise is that this is not necessarily referring to monetary growth alone.
The word for ‘wealth’, here in the Hebrew, is חַיִל ḥayil – Strong’s H2428 which means, ‘strength, efficiency, wealth, army, ability, capability, excellence’ and comes from the root word חִיל ḥil – Strong’s H2342 which means, ‘to be firm, strong, endure, prosper’.
The Hebrew word that is used here in this verse for ‘power’ is כֹּחַ ko‘aḥ – Strong’s H3581 which means, ‘strength, power, ability, might, wealth’.
When we understand these words in the greater context, we can then learn and know that יהוה strengthens us to be capable and endure – so this is not only related to material wealth!!!
We must be cautious of those who teach or assume that His Right Hand (יהושע) and His Power (Spirit) gives material prosperity, because we must also recognise that Satan can make people who bow down to him rich too!
The “prosperity gospel” falsely leads people away from obedience to the Torah while claiming their right to material prosperity – and this is no different to the temptation that יהושע faced in the Wilderness, when Satan told יהושע to throw Himself down from the ‘Set-Apart’ place, after having tempted Him with the kingdoms of this world if He bowed in worship to Satan.
The false message today, is doing the same thing – it is telling people to ‘throw themselves off of the Set-Apart Place’ (which is a picture of falling away and forsaking the Torah), while erroneously telling them that they will be protected by falsely promising them material security, that they claim they have a right to receive.
Throwing oneself off of the Set-Apart place is a picture of forsaking the commands of Elohim and rejecting the Torah (instructions) for set-apart living and in the process, being led astray by Satan who promotes the material over the spiritual!
What we need to recognise is that no matter how hard we work – we have all that we have because יהוה makes it possible – and it is not all about materialism!
Sha’ul learnt to be content not matter what circumstances he found himself in – whether in plenty or in lack.
Our circumstances do not determine our contentment; but rather recognising that it is יהוה who gives us the strength to endure and overcome any circumstance with great joy and peace while walking in the fear of יהוה – That is great gain:
Timotiyos Aleph/1 Timothy 6:6 “But reverence with contentment is great gain.”
Verse 19-20 – follow other mighty ones and you will perish!
People are ‘following’ or ‘serving’ their bank account or traditions or even their social and sporting events, or their possessions.
We have been warned – serve any other and we will die!!! The reason why so many are serving ‘traditions’ is because they do not ‘obey’ the voice of יהוה.
Mattithyahu/Matthew 7:6-8 “And He answering, said to them, “Well did Yeshayahu prophesy concerning you hypocrites, as it has been written, ‘This people respect Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. 7 And in vain do they worship Me, teaching as teachings the commands of men.’ 8 “Forsaking the command of Elohim, you hold fast the tradition of men.”
Yoḥanan/John 3:36 “He who believes in the Son possesses everlasting life, but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of Elohim remains on him.”
Please see sermon notes on a message called, ‘KEEPING A FIRM GRIP ON THE TRUTH’ (Joshua 23) under the ‘sermons 2012/2013’ menu on our site (https://atfotc.com) or by clicking on the following link:
This chapter further warns us against pride and emphasises the fact that when we experience and walk in the joy and blessing of righteousness and see great victory over unrighteousness, we must not think in our hearts that we have what we have because of our own righteousness – it is because of Elohim guarding His Covenant that He swore to Aḇraham, Yitsḥaq and Ya’aqoḇ!
Timotiyos Bet/2 Timothy 1:8-10 “So do not be ashamed of the witness of our Master, nor of me His prisoner, but suffer hardship with me for the Good News according to the power of Elohim, 9 who has saved us and called us with a set-apart calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and favour which was given to us in Messiah יהושע before times of old, 10 but now revealed by the appearing of our Saviour יהושע Messiah, who indeed abolished death and brought life and incorruptibility to light through the Good News”
Verse 9-16 – remember how you provoked יהוה to wrath and quickly turned aside!
In this chapter Mosheh makes it clear that we are to recognize that we were not delivered because we were more numerous than other peoples, but rather it is because He is faithful to His Covenant and He drives out the wrong because they are wrong and wicked and then he instructs us to remember how we provoked יהוה and here Mosheh recounts the incident of the golden calf that Aharon made.
Aharon made the calf and he even used an engraving tool, showing how he spent much time and effort in building this golden calf.
This is exactly what is happening today – so many are ‘giving their gold’ to the church, so that their leaders can fashion and shape for them a golden calf, which they can relate to in worshipping their own way as opposed to submitting and worshipping according to the pattern and instructions of יהוה as given through His Torah (Mosheh).
Aharon builds this abominable calf, and has spent much time on it and proudly declares that “Tomorrow is a festival to יהוה”
Aharon and the rest of Yisra’ĕl were sincere in their declaration of worshipping יהוה however this was seen as a corrupted form of worship in יהוה’s eyes, and this is a vital lesson for us today – we cannot worship Him however we see fit, no matter how much money we have spent on programmes and buildings and equipment and all the paraphernalia that simply mimics the world’s strategies of running a business.
We are to worship Him His way and learn and understand the design of His Tent/House for then we would ensure that there is no Mitsrayim still in us!!!
What this pictures for us, is syncretised worship – that is the mixing of worship through a blending of foreign or pagan practices and using them to worship the Creator and this is not worship in His eyes!
The church has said that they worship the Creator on sun-day and have adopted the pagan worship days of pagan fertility worship while having thrown out the True Appointed Times of Elohim and they proclaim them as a ‘festival unto Him’ while it is nothing more than profane worship which He hates and will destroy!
יהוה wanted to wipe them all out and Mosheh intercedes and is a wonderful picture of יהושע, the Living Torah, making intercession and standing in the gap for us; and Mosheh reminds יהוה of His Covenant (not that He needs reminding – but rather we do) and יהוה relents.
Mosheh was angry, and so he had a right to be – he threw the tablets on the ground and this was a witness against them that they had broken Covenant and had forgotten quickly the “we shall do” that they all declared at the foot of the mountain when declaring their commitment to the Marriage Covenant, and it was not just a few disobedient ones so that Aharon may have been able to subdue the rebellion, but here he was leading it!!!
How many of our lives have been shattered, because of an idol in our heart?
Marriages broken, families divided, careers ruined – all for the sake of being double minded in our hearts toward יהוה.
The tablets Mosheh shattered contained the solution. We need to pick up those shattered pieces of our lives and read what is written on those tablets. The Words of יהוה are for the healing of the Nations
Mosheh burned the calf and ground it to powder and scattered it on the water made everyone drink it. In all these images we see shadow picture of what would happen when Yisra’ĕl would indeed commit whorings after the nations – they would be scattered over the face of the earth and would drink of the wrath of Elohim.
They did not want to drink the PURE WATER of the Word of יהוה and in effect they had made their bed and must lie in it and face the consequences:
Ḥazon/Revelation 2:20-23 “But I hold against you that you allow that woman Izeḇel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and lead My servants astray to commit whoring and to eat food offered to idols. 21 “And I gave her time to repent of her whoring, and she did not repent. 22 “See, I am throwing her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great affliction, unless they repent of their works. 23 “And I shall slay her children with death. And all the assemblies shall know that I am the One searching the kidneys and hearts. And I shall give to each one of you according to your works.”
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 25:27-28 “And you shall say to them, ‘Thus said יהוה of hosts, the Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, “Drink, be drunk, and vomit! Fall and rise no more, because of the sword which I am sending among you.”’ 28 “And it shall be, when they refuse to take the cup from your hand to drink, then you shall say to them, ‘Thus said יהוה of hosts, “You shall drink!”
When you worship in any other way that is contrary to that which has been commanded by Elohim and take on mixed worship then you too, no matter how sincere your vain and false worship may be, will drink of the wrath of Elohim:
Ḥazon/Revelation 14:9-10 “And a third messenger followed them, saying with a loud voice, “If anyone worships the beast and his image, and receives his mark upon his forehead or upon his hand, 10 he also shall drink of the wine of the wrath of Elohim, which is poured out undiluted into the cup of His wrath. And he shall be tortured with fire and sulphur before the set-apart messengers and before the Lamb.”
What we also see, in this picture of Mosheh coming down and breaking the tablets of stone, is that it is a shadow picture of the first coming of Messiah, who Himself, the Living Torah, came down and was broken because of our rebellion and sin and how, at that time, He came to destroy the works of the flesh and needed to return to The Father, in order that the Spirit may be poured out and the commands then be written upon our hearts, which is foreshadowed by Mosheh coming back down, with new tablets and putting them into the Ark of The Witness, which we see in Shemoth/Exodus Chapter 34.
The first set of tablets never went into the Ark, which is symbolic of the heart of the Tabernacle and the first tablets were broken and new tablets were written by Elohim and placed in the Ark and it was at Shaḇuoth that He wrote the Renewed Covenant on the hearts of His people, placing His Words into the heart of His Tabernacle – We are the Tabernacle of the Most-High!
Why it is important for us to remember these events is so that we are kept from repeating them!
Sadly, though we see that Yisra’ĕl obviously did not remember how they had provoked Elohim to wrath and Yaroḇ’am went and did the same thing – only this time he went even further and, in a sense, did more abominable things in that he set up two golden calves – one in Běyth El and one in Dan:
Melaḵim Aleph/1 Kings 12:28-29 “So the sovereign took counsel and made two calves of gold, and said to the people, “It is too much for you to go up to Yerushalayim. See, your mighty ones, O Yisra’ĕl, which brought you up from the land of Mitsrayim!” 29 And he set up one in Běyth Ěl, and the other he put in Dan.”
When Yaroḇʽam, the king of the northern tribes, had built Sheḵem in the north as the capital of Ephrayim, he did not want people to go to Yerushalayim to worship in fear that they would return to Reḥaḇʽam, the king of Yehuḏah, and so he made two calves of gold, setting one up in Běyth Ěl and another in Dan, made high places of all sorts and made many priests from all sorts of people who were not from Lĕwi.
And this became the focus of their worship – calf worship – they had not learnt from the incident in the Wilderness many years before when Aharon built a golden calf proclaiming a festival unto יהוה, while in יהוה’s eyes it was an abomination (Shemoth/Exodus 32). This time was no different – יהוה does not change!
Yisra’ĕl was more concerned about their calf being captured due to the tightening grip of judgement was coming upon them and Hoshěa/Hosea 10 we see the place Běyth Ěl being called Běyth Awĕn.
Běyth Awĕn means ‘house of iniquity/ house of wickedness/ house of vanity’.
What we see very clearly here is the fact that the House of El had now become the House of iniquity!!!
False worship taking place and the people leading the services were false priests!
So, as we look at the historical accounts of Yisra’ĕl, after entering into the Promised land, that they in fact failed to heed Mosheh’s warnings to remember how they provoked to wrath יהוה our Elohim and so they committed two terrible sins that they warned against:
1 – They had forsaken יהוה
2 – They had relied on their own might and tried to make it on their own
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 2:13 “For My people have done two evils: they have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, to hew out for themselves cisterns, cracked cisterns, which do not hold water.”
They were doubly guilty and for this they would be punished:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 16:18 “And first I shall repay double for their crookedness and their sin, because they have defiled My land with the dead bodies of their disgusting matters, and have filled My inheritance with their abominations.”
The two evils that made them guilty – forsaking יהוה and establishing their own ways – and that still happens today! But as one takes a look not so far back we can see the same sin happening in the form of the ‘Crusades’ in using man-driven military might to gain coverts to a false twisted religion – yet we must know that יהוה will punish for apostasy and militarism as many rely on their own might and strength and forsake following יהוה.
Please see the sermon notes on a message called, “The Vine and the Calf” (Hosea 10) under the ‘sermons 2011/2012’ menu on our site (https://atfotc.com) or by clicking on the following link:
Verse 22 – Taḇʽĕrah, Massah and Qiḇroth Hatta’awah
Taḇʽĕrah – תַּבְעֵרָה – Strong’s H8404 meaning, ‘burning’ from the root word בָּעַר ba‘ar – Strong’s H1197 meaning, ‘to burn, consume, kindle, destroy’.
Massah – מַסָּה Strong’s H4532 meaning, ‘temptation, test, try, prove’.
Qiḇroth Hatta’awah – קִבְרוֹת הַתַּאֲוָה – Strong’s H6914 = “graves of lust” from the two words, קֶבֶר qeḇer – Strong’s H6913 meaning, ‘graves, sepulchre’ and תַּאֲוָה ta’avah – Strong’s H8378 meaning, ‘a desire, longing, craving, lusting, intense greed’.
At these three places we made יהוה wroth, and I believe that there is a lesson here with them being mentioned together; and that is – when we have a burning desire, or are consumed by temptations that burn in our flesh, and we lust after that which is not of Elohim, then we make Him wroth!
Our walk in Messiah certainly must include a death to ‘lust’.
We must put to death lusts of the flesh.
It was here at Qiḇroth Hatta’awah where the people lusted after meat and יהוה sent quail and the people gathered and gathered and ate and ate and while they were eating יהוה sent a plague in wrath and they then called this place Qiḇroth Hatta’awah because they buried those who had lusted and died.
We must bury our lusts!!!
We can learn from our ancestor’s mistakes:
Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 10:6 “And these became examples for us, so that we should not lust after evil, as those indeed lusted.”
Galatiyim/Galatians 5:16 “And I say: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not accomplish the lust of the flesh.”
Kěpha/Peter tells us that we have the Mighty-Like power of יהוה that has been given to us so that we have all we need for life and reverence, through the knowledge of Him who has called us to esteem and uprightness and we have been given these in order for us to be partakers of the Mighty-like nature, having escaped from the corruption in the world, caused by lust.
Yoḥanan Aleph.1 John 2:15-17 “Do not love the world nor that which is in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 Because all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world passes away, and the lust of it, but the one doing the desire of Elohim remains forever.”
When we truly walk in the desire of Elohim, we must be able to kill any lusts, as lust will only end up killing you if you do not kill it!
Verse 23 – After being at Qaḏĕsh Barnĕa, which means ‘set-apart’, Yisra’ĕl once again ‘quickly turned aside and rebelled against the mouth of יהוה and did not trust in Him nor listened to His voice!
This is a huge problem for so many – they trust in themselves no matter how much has happened in the past and this is the danger of forgetting the times we were wrong and disciplined by our Father!
When people neglect to take heed of the mistakes of the past they quickly turn aside from the right-rulings of Elohim and assume their own standards of righteousness:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 21:2 “All a man’s ways are right in his own eyes, but יהוה weighs the hearts.”
Doing what is right in your own eyes is foolish:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 12:15 “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but he who listens to advice is wise.”
The foolish man builds on sand and not on the ROCK of TRUTH, and so the foolish one walks in his own ways rather than in the ways of the Torah of Elohim!
There are a lot of foolish people out there today – do not be like the masses and end up becoming a company of fools who have quickly turned aside from the Truth!
Turning aside from the Truth happens very quickly as one ‘forgets’ how יהוה was provoked to wrath:
Shophetim/Judges 2:17 “However, they did not listen to their rulers either, but went whoring after other mighty ones, and bowed down to them. They soon turned aside from the way in which their fathers walked, in obeying the commands of יהוה – they did not do so.”
Sha’ul also could not believe how quickly those in Galatia had turned from the Truth to fall for ‘another’ message:
Galatiyim/Galatians 1:6 “I marvel that you are so readily turning away from Him who called you in the favour of Messiah, to a different ‘Good News,’”
Forgetting, leads to pride that simply takes eyes off of the Truth and focuses on self and, as a result, people turn to whatever they see fit in their own eyes – hence the formulation of 1000’s of differing doctrines of man, that have clearly caused so many to quickly turn aside from the Truth – a very clear danger we are to guard against as we continually remember that it was יהוה who brought us out by His great power and by His outstretched arm!
Verse 1-5 – New Stones – Same Words!!!
Mosheh now had to now cut two new tablets of stone like the first. Mosheh had to cut the stones; unlike the first one’s which was the work of Elohim and so, we see the response to Mosheh from יהוה; that if he wanted to lead this people, then he had to fix what was broken and this is a picture of Messiah coming down and taking on the flesh in order to restore what was broken so that the very same Words could be written upon our hearts.
This picture of Mosheh having to cut 2 new stones also shows us that we are to take responsibility for our actions, and so it is when we carve out something for ourselves that we will at times get more out of it than if it is just handed to us on a platter.
When we dig out the truth for ourselves, it may be the same as what those who have taught us has said, but it will stay with us better, because we have invested ourselves in the search.
What we labour for, we appreciate more and we are all called to seek out the wonder and truth of His word for ourselves, as we repair the years of lawless living through inherited lies, doing our part to be the living stones that are able to bear the Words of Elohim and guard them!
We are to write the Truth on our hearts as we carve away those lies that have somehow been forged into our hearts:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 3:3 “Let not kindness and truth forsake you – Bind them around your neck, Write them on the tablet of your heart.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 7:3 “Bind them on your fingers; Write them on the tablet of your heart.”
Bind them on your fingers and heart – this speaks of our walk and our work – and so we see that the way we bind them on us is by doing them and keep on doing them, so that they get forged and fashioned on to our hearts and hands that they become our life and how we naturally live!
A heart that is prepared to receive His Word is acceptable – Mosheh had to prepare the new tablets of stone – we are to prepare our hearts to receive His Truth and have the soil of our hearts in good shape.
When יהוה says:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 31:33 “For this is the covenant I shall make with the house of Yisra’ĕl after those days, declares יהוה: I shall put My Torah in their inward parts, and write it on their hearts. And I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people.”
He is not saying that He will wave a wand and magically do it all for us. Just because He writes it on our hearts and minds do not guarantee that we will obey what He has written.
We have to study it and practice it (put it in our minds) before we come to love it – as that is what love for His Word means – and that is when it is upon our hearts.
What we do not study and practice repeatedly, will never find its way into our hearts, or at least it will not stay there.
It is in the doing that the understanding comes – when we start keeping the Sabbath, it may not always come naturally but when we keep on keeping on we develop a true love for it as it sinks in and ‘drops’ from our minds to our hearts and we earnestly begin to love ‘doing’ His commands.
Walking in love for Elohim takes effort and diligence and requires our commitment to making the tablets of our hearts ready and available to be written upon!
בְּאֵרֹת בְּנֵי־יַעֲקָן Be‘eroth Benĕi Yaʽaqan – Strong’s H885 comes from the root word בְּאֵר be‘er – Strong’s H875 which means, “a well or pit” and Benĕi Yaʽaqan – בְּנֵי יַעֲקָ֑ן Strong’s H1142 which means, “sons of twisting” which comes from the two root words:
1) בֵּן ben – Strong’s H1121 – ‘son’ and
2) יַעֲקָן Ya‘aqan – Strong’s H3292 meaning, ‘let him oppress them’ and comes from the word עֲקָן Aqan – Strong’s H6130 meaning, ‘sharp-sighted’ and was a descendant of Ěsaw; and this name comes from the primitive root עָקַל aqal – Strong’s H6127 meaning, ‘to bend, twist’.
This stop/starting point shows us that we are to not twist or bend the Truth.
Twisting the truth is lies – and we are not sons of the deceiver, but sons of Elohim – and we must speak truth. Be careful never to twist the truth in any way, some will try this after they have been on the road for a long time and have seemingly built up trust of others – watch your tongue!
The fuller name of the place is The Wells of the Sons of Ya‘aqan and so speaks of those who continually drink a twisted message or rather that their source of knowledge is not the Truth but is a well of twisted lies, which is exactly what the church is causing many to drink from and in the process of making people believe that they are drinking the truth, they are oppressing them with twisted lies.
When יהוה disciplines us, we may often be tempted to twist the facts to make it look like the one doing the disciplining is the one at fault. Ya’aqan was a descendent of Ěsaw and his name can also mean, ‘let him oppress them’ as mentioned.
We know that Ěsaw sold his birth right for a meal and is referred to as being hated by Elohim.
Ya‘aqan represents those who will twist the truth to get their way and push their viewpoint across.
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 24:17 “Do not twist the right-ruling of a stranger or the fatherless, nor take the garment of a widow.”
Tehillah/Psalm 56:5 “All day long they twist my words; all their thoughts are against me for evil.”
Kěpha/Peter speaks of those who will twist many writings of Sha’ul:
Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 3:14-16 “So then, beloved ones, looking forward to this, do your utmost to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless, 15 and reckon the patience of our Master as deliverance, as also our beloved brother Sha’ul wrote to you, according to the wisdom given to him, 16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them concerning these matters, in which some are hard to understand, which those who are untaught and unstable twist to their own destruction, as they do also the other Scriptures.”
This above Scripture speaks a lot about what we see happening today – Kěpha/Peter writes clearly that Sha’ul wrote according to the wisdom given to him and Sha’ul was, and still is in regards to his writings, a great Torah teacher yet sadly too many today are twisting his writings to their own destruction, and they are twisting not only his writings but all Scripture!
There are those in Christianity who are twisting Sha’ul’s writings thinking that he is teaching them that the Torah has been done away with, which is absolutely ridiculous!
Then there are those who are walking the Torah road who sadly want to throw out Sha’ul’s writings and in so doing they end up on a path that leads to a denial of Messiah!
For many, who twist writings – they do so because they are untaught and unstable.
We must be ever learning as we come each week on a Shabbat and immerse ourselves in the word as we gather together in community and learn the Torah of Elohim!
There are many twisted teachings out there – too many ‘tickling ear messages’ that are leading many astray – let us not be sons of twisting – but rather sons of Truth as we walk in and remain in the Truth!
מוֹסֵרָה Mosĕrah, also known as Mosĕroth – מֹסְרוֹת Strong’s H4149 means, “bonds” or ‘admonition or correction’ or ‘discipline’.
Let us never get to a place where we cannot receive correction!
Aharon died here and Elʽazar his son became priest in his place! Aharon could not enter the land because of rebellion, and here we can learn that we must always be open to correction, for if we are not, we may find ourselves unable to enter into the Promises of Elohim!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 3:11 “My son, do not despise the discipline of יהוה, and do not loathe His reproof.”
Guḏgoḏah – גֻּדְגֹּדָה – Strong’s H1412 which means “the slashing place” and comes from the primitive root word גָּדַד gaḏaḏ – Strong’s H1413 meaning, ‘to penetrate or cut, gash’ as well as ‘muster yourselves in troops’.
Yotḇathah – יָטְבָתָה Strong’s H3193 = “pleasantness” or “a good calm place”, and here, in Deḇarim, it is called a land of rivers of water!
It was here that יהוה separated the tribe of Lĕwi to bear the ark of the covenant of יהוה, to stand before יהוה, to serve Him, and to bless in His Name, to this day.
We need to learn that in order for us to begin to enjoy the pleasantness and shalom of His Good Word, there must be a slashing away of what the world has loaded upon us through vain traditions and lies and as we ‘die to self’ and allow His Word to empower us, we can boldly begin to serve Him as a set-apart priesthood.
We are called to be a royal priesthood – set-apart unto Elohim, to walk in the ‘pleasantness’ of His Good Word!
Tehillah/Psalm 133:1 “See how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity.”
Tehillah/Psalm 1:1-3 “Blessed is the man who shall not walk in the counsel of the wrong, and shall not stand in the path of sinners, and shall not sit in the seat of scoffers, 2 but his delight is in the Torah of יהוה, and he meditates in His Torah day and night. 3 For he shall be as a tree Planted by the rivers of water, that yields its fruit in its season, and whose leaf does not wither, and whatever he does prospers.”
What a wonderful promise!
Delighting in the Torah, meditating on the Torah will cause us to be led in pleasant places, places where there are rivers of water – that is an abundance of joy and Truth for us to immerse ourselves in with great delight!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 41:17-18 “When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongues have failed for thirst, I, יהוה, do answer them; I, the Elohim of Yisra’ĕl, do not forsake them. 18 “I open rivers on bare hills, and fountains in the midst of valleys; I make a wilderness become a pool of water, and a dry land springs of water.”
All who are thirsty come… is the invitation of our Master and Sovereign, יהושע Messiah.
The only One who can satisfy our thirst and lead us beside still waters, is יהושע Messiah.
This stop reminds us of that and reminds us where we should be constantly be drinking from and how we can be calm in our journey here, for our trust is in Him!
The tribe of Lĕwi has no portion or inheritance with his brothers – יהוה is his inheritance!
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 44:28 “And it shall be to them for an inheritance, I am their inheritance. And you give them no possession in Yisra’ĕl – I am their possession.”
What better inheritance or possession could they ask for!!!
One thing we can take from this is the picture of how we as a royal priesthood belong to יהושע – He is our inheritance and our possession! We have no need of anything else – the richest we can be is to know and be in Him!!!
Sha’ul understood that having Messiah outweighs any gain he might have received from the world:
Pilipiyim/Philippians 3:7-11 “But what might have been a gain to me, I have counted as loss, because of Messiah. 8 What is more, I even count all to be loss because of the excellence of the knowledge of Messiah יהושע my Master, for whom I have suffered the loss of all, and count them as refuse, in order to gain Messiah, 9 and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through belief in Messiah, the righteousness which is from Elohim on the basis of belief, 10 to know Him, and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death, 11 if somehow I might attain to the resurrection from the dead.”
Verse 10 – 40 days and 40 night’s intercession
Mosheh went back up the Mountain to receive further instruction and ‘training in righteousness’ and at that time he interceded for Yisra’ĕl, and is a great picture of how Messiah intercedes for us.
יהושע was tried for 40 days and nights in the Wilderness and as a result He faced great trials and temptations and overcame and is able to faithfully intercede for us, giving us a bold access to the Set-Apart Place that we may receive compassion and find favour:
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 4:14-16 “Therefore, since we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, יהושע the Son of Elohim, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a High Priest unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who was tried in all respects as we are, apart from sin. 16 Therefore, let us come boldly to the throne of favour, in order to receive compassion, and find favour for timely help.”
Verse 11 – this time Mosheh came down Yisra’ĕl was not involved in idolatrous worship – they could move on!!!
Mosheh had spent 2 periods of ’40 days and 40 nights’ without food and water, on the Mountain!!!
We are also able to see, as mentioned, that Messiah suffered 40 days and nights, in the Wilderness, and overcame.
The ‘second’ period of 40 days, that we can see in Scripture, in relation to Messiah, is after His resurrection when He walked 40 days with His talmidim.
During these 40 days, unlike Mosheh, He ate with His taught ones, which is a very important picture of fulfillment of His Work on the stake, that had dealt with sin and rebellion, and now, in Messiah, we are able to ‘move on’ and take possession of His sure promises as we guard His clear commands.
The picture of Messiah eating, during this ‘second’ 40-day period, gives us full assurance that He has made perfect the access we have to fellowship with Elohim and eat of the Bread of Life and be satisfied, having the Word inscribed on the tablets of our hearts by His Set-Apart Spirit!!!
What does יהוה ask of us?
1 – FEAR יהוה our Elohim!
True fear of Elohim is characterised by total obedience and complete surrender, giving no room for mixed worship. True fear of Elohim entails avoiding sin at all costs, and no mixing of His commands with vain customs and defiled traditions of man!
Shemoth/Exodus 20:20 “And Mosheh said to the people, “Do not fear, for Elohim has come to prove you, and in order that His fear be before you, so that you do not sin.”
We see that this mixing of worship happened, despite the warnings and still happens today in the same way as we see recorded in:
Melaḵim Bět/2 Kings 17:33-41 “They were fearing יהוה, and they were serving their own mighty ones, according to the ruling of the nations from among whom they had been exiled. 34 To this day they are doing according to the former rulings: they are not fearing יהוה, nor do they follow their laws or their right-rulings, or the Torah and command which יהוה had commanded the children of Ya’aqoḇ, whose name He made Yisra’ĕl, 35 with whom יהוה had made a covenant and commanded them, saying, “Do not fear other mighty ones, nor bow down to them nor serve them nor slaughter to them; 36 but יהוה, who brought you up from the land of Mitsrayim with great power and with an outstretched arm, Him you shall fear, and to Him you shall bow yourselves, and to Him you shall slaughter. 37 “And guard to do forever the laws, and the right-rulings, and the Torah, and the command which He wrote for you. And do not fear other mighty ones. 38 “And do not forget the covenant that I have made with you, and do not fear other mighty ones. 39 “But fear יהוה your Elohim, so that He delivers you from the hand of all your enemies.” 40 And they did not obey, but did according to their former ruling. 41 So these nations were fearing יהוה, and served their carved images1, both their children and their children’s children. As their fathers did, they are doing to this day.”
To understand the fear of יהוה we need to be seeking Him and crying out for wisdom that He gives us in His Torah:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 2:3-5 “For if you cry for discernment, lift up your voice for understanding, 4 If you seek her as silver, and search for her as hidden treasures, 5 Then you would understand the fear of יהוה, and find the knowledge of Elohim.”
We know that the fear of יהוה is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge of the Set-Apart One is understanding – and so, to understand the fear of יהוה and find the knowledge of Him, we are to be seeking and digging into His Word – and sadly, there are too many today who are not doing this, as they are steered toward the doctrines and dogmas of man and the traditions that are birthed from them, which causes them to quickly forsake the commands of Elohim and therefore, can never understand what True Fear of יהוה is all about.
Please see the sermon notes on a message called, ‘THOSE FEARING ELOHIM – LISTEN!’ as I have already pointed out in chapter 8 above as an extra study on the fear of Elohim under the ‘sermons 2011/2012’ menu on our site (https://atfotc.com) or by clicking on the following link:
Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 7:1 “Having, then, these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of the flesh and spirit, perfecting set-apartness in the fear of Elohim.”
2 – WALK IN HIS WAYS –
Miḵah/Micah 6:8 “He has declared to you, O man, what is good. And what does יהוה require of you but to do right, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your Elohim?”
What does יהוה require of us?
Well as we see – that it is to do right, love kindness and walk humbly with our Elohim!
‘Walk’ in Hebrew is the word הָלַךְ hā∙lǎḵ – Strong’s H1980 meaning, ‘to walk, to live, manner of life, cause to live’ and literally speaks of how one lives.
It is used as a verb indicating that it is an active expression of one’s life.
We are to actively and continually be walking in Messiah, and as Miḵah tells us that we are required to walk ‘humbly’ with Elohim.
The root word used here for humble is צָנַע tsana – Strong’s H6800 meaning, ‘to be modest or humble’.
In Miḵah/Micah 6:8 it is expressed as follows: וְהַצְנֵעַ לֶכֶת ‘ve-ha-ts’nea lechet’ which literally expresses ‘a making humble to walk’ or ‘showing a humble walk’, again emphasising that our humility is seen in our walk – that is our walk of obedience as we clearly see and understand the words in:
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 2:6 “The one who says he stays in Him ought himself also to walk, even as He walked.”
The Greek word for ‘walk’ is περιπατέω peripateō – Strong’s G4043 and carries the same meaning and that is, ‘to walk, behaviour, to conduct one’s self, to make one’s way, to tread with the feet, to make one’s life’.
Why all the definitions?
To clearly reiterate that to walk as Messiah walked involves action and that action is to be in complete line with His walk and that is a walk of total obedience – the greatest expression of humility!
In order to walk right, we must understand the fear of Elohim, or else we would not be able to walk straight and as Kěpha tells us, we are to pass the time of our sojourning in fear, as we realise that we have inherited lies and futility form our fathers:
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 1:17-18 “And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, pass the time of your sojourning in fear, 18 knowing that you were redeemed from your futile way of life inherited from your fathers, not with what is corruptible, silver or gold”
3 – LOVE HIM
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 5:3 “For this is the love for Elohim, that we guard His commands, and His commands are not heavy”
Tehillah/Psalm 145:20 “יהוה preserves all those loving Him, but all the wrong ones He destroys.”
Romiyim/Romans 8:28 “And we know that all matters work together for good to those who love Elohim, to those who are called according to His purpose.”
As we can clearly see from the above verses – to love Elohim is to OBEY Him – and those who do so HE preserves and works together all things for our good. Sadly, many like to grab these promises while they clearly are not LOVING Him as they have no regard for His Torah!
Our love for יהוה is expressed in our obedience to His commands – to His Torah! So now understanding that, do you think we can we truly say, based on our actions that ought to correspond with our confession of faith, that we love His Torah?
Tehillah/Psalm 119 is a beautifully constructed masterpiece that truly expresses the psalmists love for the Torah of יהוה.
In this Tehillah/Psalm 19 we see various words used repeatedly in reference to the instructions, decrees, words and ordinances etc. of יהוה.
Throughout the entire Tehillah/Psalm 119 there is in every verse one of the following expressions; except for one verse and that is verse 122; and these ten expressions correspond to or rather point us to ‘The 10 Words’, or as we know it as the Ten Commandments:
So, let us take a brief look at these:
‘10 words of Tehillah/Psalm 119’:
1 – תּוֹרָה torah – Strong’s H8451 means, ‘utterance’, ‘teaching’, ‘instruction’ or ‘revelation’ from Elohim’. Other definitions include: ‘information that is imparted to a student; direction; body of prophetic teaching; instruction on Messianic Age; body of priestly direction’, and this comes from the primitive root verb יָרָה yarah – Strong’s H3384 meaning, ‘to shoot, throw, instruct, direct, teach’, which therefore can give us the understanding of ‘Torah’ to mean the following:
TO AIM OR POINT IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION and MOVE IN THAT DIRECTION
It is used 25 times in Tehillah/Psalm 119 and refers to the whole body of Scriptures teaching and instructions as found in the writings of Mosheh.
We fix our eyes on יהושע Messiah – The Living Torah – The Word made flesh – and walk in Him!
This word is first used in Berěshith/Genesis 26:5 in the plural, and in this Tehillah/Psalm 119 it is used in the following verses: 1, 18, 29, 34, 44, 51, 53, 55, 61, 70, 72, 77, 85, 92, 97, 109, 113, 126, 136, 142, 150, 153, 163, 165, 174.
It is also interesting, and wonderful for me, to see how the word תּוֹרָה torah clearly reveals the Messiah!
Let me show you how.
The original language spoken and written by Hebrews is referred to as Ancient Hebrew Script which consisted of an alphabet of pictographic symbols with each rendering its own unique meaning.
This later developed into the ‘middle script’ or what is commonly known as Paleo-Hebrew or Phoenician text and then further developed into what is known as ‘Biblical Hebrew’ which we have readily available for us today.
Though the Hebrew Language went through a number of changes, in terms of the writing style of the letters, we are able to discern the original symbols or pictures that were used which, actually resembled their meaning.
Each symbol or picture carried a meaning or meanings and when symbols were collectively put together they would spell a word that carried a meaning or clear description that would be readily understood.
The Hebrew word תּוֹרָה torah – Strong’s H8451 is a combination of four symbols: (Remember Hebrew is read right to left):
In the ancient pictographic script, it is written as follows:
And in the Biblical Hebrew text it is written as follows:
From right to left the four letters are as follows:
Taw/Tav – תּ:
The ancient script has this letter as which is pictured as two crossed sticks, and can represent for us the meaning of, ‘seal, covenant, mark or sign’; as this once again points to the complete work of Messiah by the renewal of the Covenant in His Blood that brings the two Houses of Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah together in Him, as One; for He is not only the ‘aleph’, but is also the ‘taw’ – that is – the beginning and the end of all creation!
Waw/Vav – וֹ:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is a ‘peg or tent peg’, which was used for securing or tying the tent or other items. The possibility of it having a Y-shape is to show that it prevents the rope from slipping off. The root meaning of this letter is ‘to add, secure or hook’.
Resh – רָ:
The ancient script has this letter written as and is pictured as ‘the head of a man’ and has the meaning of the head of a man as well as chief, top, begging or first. It means ‘top’, as in the top or head of a body and ‘chief’, as in head of a tribe or people as well as the one who rules the people.
Hey – ה:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘a man standing with his arms raised out’. The meaning of the letter is “behold, look, breath, sigh and reveal or revelation”, from the idea of revealing a great sight by pointing it out. It also carries for us the meaning of surrender, as we lift up our hands and submit to יהוה as we lift our hands in praise, declaring His authority under which we humbly submit!
When we consider these pictographic symbols and their meanings, we can clearly see by the word rendered as ‘Torah’ the wonderful work of Messiah, who secures for us the Covenant in His own Blood that brings the two houses (Yehuḏah and Yisra’ĕl) – the two sticks – together!
It could best be rendered in a powerful testimony of the work of Messiah as follows:
BEHOLD THE MAN, MESSIAH OUR HEAD, WHO BY HIS OWN BLOOD RENEWED THE COVENANT, NAILING TO THE ‘STAKE’ THAT WHICH WAS WRITTEN AGAINST US, AND SECURING THE COVENANT IN ORDER THAT THE TWO STICKS CAN BE BROUGHT BACK TOGETHER IN HIM, WHOM WE PRAISE
Other definitions based on this word could also render:
‘What comes from the man nailed to the ‘cross’ or upright pole’
‘Behold the man who secures the covenant’
‘To a cross is nailed the highest, it is revealed in Torah’
Wow – how awesome is this!!!
Now – does this sound like a heavy law??? Not at all!!!
This description or definition does not make me think of fines or of a judge or of punishment or even of prison! יהושע tells us that His yoke is easy – His yoke is His Torah (that is – His instructions and teaching)!
The word for sin, in Hebrew, comes from the root word חָטָא ḥata – Strong’s H2398 which means, ‘to miss, go wrong, sin, error, fault’ and in essence means ‘to miss the mark or target’!
With this is mind, it makes perfect sense, and brings great clarity, in understanding that the Torah becomes very vital to us, especially if we do not want to miss the purpose and fulfilment of our life or ‘miss the mark’, so to speak. Remember, the word ‘Torah’ carries the meaning of aiming in the right direction and moving in that direction.
Sha’ul describes this as fixing our eyes on יהושע – the Author and Perfecter of our faith.
We aim our sights at יהושע, lock them in and run with perseverance in that which has been marked out.
Sin is missing the mark – running off the mark as you take your eyes off of יהושע!!! The Torah therefore is the way to aim and go, in Him!
2 – מִצְוֹתַ – ‘mitsvot’– this is the plural of the word מִצְוָה mitzvah – Strong’s H4687 which means, ‘commandment, command, obligation, precept’, which comes from the primitive root צָוָה tsavah – Strong’s H6680 which means, ‘to lay charge (upon), give charge to, command, order, appoint, commission, ordain’, and hence speaks of the constitutional, or set up commands, and is used 22 times in Tehillah/Psalm 119 in referring to the clear definitive directives issued by יהוה.
It is used first in Berěshith/Genesis 26:5 and here used in the following verses: 6, 10, 19, 21, 32, 35, 47, 48, 60, 66, 73, 86, 96 (sing.), 98, 115, 127, 131, 143, 151, 166, 172, and 176.
3 – דֶּרֶךְ dereḵ – Strong’s H1870 which means, ‘way, road, distance, journey’ and is from the word דָּרַךְ daraḵ – Strong’s H1869 which means, ‘to tread or march’ and so speaks of our walk, our every step that we take – this we are to commit to יהוה, keeping and guarding the soil, garden of our heart that we bear fruit – and we do that as we ‘walk in’ Messiah who is The Way!
It is used 13 times in this Tehillah/Psalm 119. First occurrence is Berěshith/Genesis 3:24 and in this Tehillim/Psalm in the following verses: 1, 3, 5, 14, 26, 27, 29, 30, 32, 33, 37, 59, 168.
In the ancient pictographic symbols of this word, we are given a greater insight in understanding how יהושע Messiah is THE WAY!
This word – דֶּרֶךְ dereḵ – in the ancient pictographic script, looks like this:
Dalet – דֶּ
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access.
Resh – רֶ
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as ‘the head of a man’ and has the meaning of the head of a man as well as chief, top, begging or first. Top as in the top or head of a body and chief an is head of a tribe or people as well as the one who rules the people.
Kaph – כֶּ:
The ancient form of this letter is pictured as – which is ‘an open palm of a hand’. The meaning behind this letter is ‘to bend and curve’ from the shape of a palm as well as ‘to tame or subdue’ as one has been bent to another’s will (under their hand), as an open hand symbolises submission. This also can picture for us a palm or palm branch from the curved palm shape. This also pictures for us that which has been openly revealed – by the ‘open hand’, or the revelation of the hand that has worked a function!
As we consider these three pictures in making up the Hebrew word דֶּרֶךְ dereḵ, in reference to this meaning THE WAY, we can clearly see how it is יהושע Messiah who is THE WAY.
As we come to the DOOR of the Tent of APPOINTMENT, we are able to come and submit under the hand of our Master and Chief, who gives us access into His presence.
Yoḥanan/John 10:19 “I am the door. Whoever enters through Me, he shall be saved, and shall go in and shall go out and find pasture.”
As one understands the design and service of the Tabernacle, then we are able to understand perfectly the clear words of our Master. It was at the door of the Tabernacle that the people would bring their offerings to the Priest, and before they were able to enter, they needed to be washed.
By looking at this ancient pictographic of the word that renders for us the meaning of THE WAY, we are also able to see the clear work of our Master, who is the Lamb that was slain, and it was His hands that took the nails for us, and in doing so released us from the dogmas which stood against us!
His shed blood covers us from the punishment of death, as long as we remain in Him!
The Houses that applied the blood of the lamb to the doorposts of their homes would not be visited by the Messenger of death, but would be passed over, as the final plague in Mitsrayim swept over the land, killing every first born of those homes that did not have the blood on their doorposts!
When Messiah said that He was the Living Bread, and that the bread that He gives is His flesh, which He would give for the life of the world, the Yehuḏim were striving with one another asking how He could give them His flesh to eat and He answered them clearly in:
Yoḥanan/John 6:53 “יהושע therefore said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Aḏam and drink His blood, you possess no life in yourselves. 54 He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood possesses everlasting life, and I shall raise him up in the last day. 55 “For My flesh is truly food, and My blood is truly drink. 56 “He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood stays in Me, and I in him.”
This was a hard teaching for most and many turned away from following the Master, as they found these words too harsh to hear and understand.
What Messiah was clearly teaching here is that unless we eat of the Pěsaḥ Meal, we have no access into life.
The Passover Meal and the Feast of Matzot is a sign on our hands and our foreheads that we belong to the Master and that we abide in Him and He in us, and that we have come to the Door and confessed our sins, having been immersed in Him and washed by His Blood, are now able to have access into the House into which we must abide, as we are built up in Him as living stones!
The WAY for us to return from sin and destruction, is to come to the Door and acknowledge the work of the Master as we guard to keep His Feasts.
When Messiah showed Himself to His taught ones after His resurrection T’oma was not there the first time and he said that unless he sees in the Master’s hands the mark of the nails, and be able to put his finger into the imprints of the nails and into the Master’s side, that he would not believe. When the Master appeared a second time, while T’oma was present we see the following in:
Yoḥanan/John 20:27-28 “Then He said to T’oma, “Bring your finger here, and see My hands. And bring your hand and put it into My side – and do not be unbelieving, but believing.” 28 And T’oma answered and said to Him, “My Master and my Elohim!”
The Hand of Elohim had now been revealed to T’oma and He acknowledged that יהושע Messiah was his Master and Elohim!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 53:1 “Who has believed our report? And to whom was the arm of יהוה revealed?”
Messiah is THE WAY – the Outstretched Arm and Hand of Elohim that has been revealed, and we who partake in the Pěsaḥ Meal and guard to keep all His Feasts, have access to the WAY He has called us to walk in!
4 – עֵדוּת eduth – Strong’s H5715 which means, ‘testimony, witness, ordinance, warning’.
The first occurrence is in Berěshith/Genesis 21:30.
It occurs in this Tehillah/Psalm 119 twenty-three times; nine times (‘eduth), vv. 14, 31, 36, 88, 99, 111, 129, 144, 157; fourteen times (‘edah, fem. sing.), vv. 2, 22, 24, 46, 59, 79, 95, 119, 125, 138, 146, 152, 167, 168. In Shemoth/Exodus 31:18 it speaks of the two tablets or stones of the witness and the word ‘eduth’ is used, speaking clearly of His commandments!
This word becomes more meaningful to us when we look at the ancient pictographic script, as it looks as follows:
= עֵ –This is the letter ‘ayin’ and in the ancient alphabet this letter is pictured as , which is ‘an eye’ and represents the idea of seeing and watching, as well as knowledge, as the eye is the window of knowledge.
= ד –This is the letter ‘dalet’, which in the ancient script is pictured as , which is a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access.
= וּ– This is the letter ‘waw’ or ‘vav’ and the ancient pictographic form of this letter is , a peg or ‘tent peg’, which was used for securing or tying the tent or other items. The possibility of it having a Y-shape is to show that it prevents the rope from slipping off. The root meaning of this letter is ‘to add, secure or hook’.
= ת – this is the letter ‘taw or tav’ which in the ancient script is pictured as – – which is the picture of two crossed sticks, and can represent for us ‘seal, covenant, mark or sign’; as this once again points to the complete work of Messiah in the renewal of the Covenant in His Blood that brings the two Houses of Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah together in Him, as One, for He is not only the ‘aleph’, but is also the ‘taw’ – the beginning and the end of all creation!
When we consider that יהושע Messiah is The Door, then we further see our need to continually be looking at Him, and praising Him as we diligently are serving in spirit and truth, guarding to do all His commands – as we look continually into the perfect Torah of Freedom and not forget what we look like!
The Word of יהוה shall be a witness against those who are not ‘looking’ at His Word and guarding to do it!
This word comes from the root word עוּד ud/ood – Strong’s H5749, which means, ‘to return, go about, repeat, do again, encircle, supports’, which is another great practical lesson in understanding how we are to continually be meditating on the Word of Elohim, as we also find ourselves repeating the cycle of studying His Torah each week, doing it again and again!
5 – פִּקּוּדִים – ‘Pikkudim’ – This is the plural of the word פִּקּוּד piqqud – Strong’s H6490 which means, ‘precepts, commandments, statutes, regulations’, which is a principle instructing to do a certain action, which is to be obeyed by all in same society of the covenant, and is translated as ‘precepts’, and refers to mandates that are joined together – precept upon precept!
It is used 21 times here in 119.
It occurs only in the Book of Tehillim/Psalms (see 19:8; 103:18; 111:7).
In this Tehillim/Psalm in the following: 4, 15, 27, 40, 45, 56, 63, 69, 78, 87, 93, 94, 100, 104, 110, 128, 134, 141, 159, 168, and 173.
6 – אִמְרָה imrah – Strong’s H565 means, ‘utterance, speech, command’, and comes from the root אָמַר amar – Strong’s H559 which means, ‘utter, say, speak’, is predominantly used in Scripture in reference to the Word of יהוה:
Tehillah/Psalm 12:6 “The Words of יהוה are clean Words, silver tried in a furnace of earth, refined seven times.”
Tehillah/Psalm 18:30 “The Ěl – His way is perfect; the Word of יהוה is proven; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.”
Tehillah/Psalm 119:140 “Your word is tried, exceedingly; and Your servant has loved it.”
It is used 19 times here in Tehillah/Psalm 119.
First occurrence in Berěshith/Genesis 4:23 rendered as ‘speech’ and here, 11, 38, 41, 50, 58, 67, 76, 82, 103, 116, 123, 133, 140, 148, 154, 158, 162, 170, 172.
7 – מִּשְׁפָּטִים mishpatim, which is the plural of מִּשְׁפָּטִ Mishpat – Strong’s H4941 which means right-ruling or judgement’, and are the ‘legal procedures’ or firm rulings that are non-negotiable.
It is through these mishpatim that the community/body of Messiah is to be ruled, and shows us how any issues that may arise would be dealt with in a prescribed way that is just and fair.
These are what we could call the ‘social laws’ that clearly teach us how to get on with each other and how we are to behave and how we are to live according to how we have been created to be in יהושע.
Tehillah/Psalm 89:14 “Righteousness and right-ruling are the foundation of Your throne; kindness and truth go before Your face.”
Tehillah/Psalm 97:2 “Clouds and darkness all around Him, righteousness and right-ruling are the foundation of His throne.”
First occurrence is in Berěshith/Genesis 18:19. Herein Tehillah/Psalm 119: 7, 13, 20, 30, 39, 43, 52, 62, 75, 84, 91, 102, 106, 108, 120, 121, 132, 137, 149, 156, 160, 164, 175.
8 – צֶדֶק צְדָקָה צַדִּיק ‘Tsedek, Tsedekah, Tsaddik’ – 3 words used here is this Tehillah/Psalm translated as righteousness and are collectively used 15 times here.
By comparing the first occurrence (Wayyiqra/Leviticus. 19:15) with the second (Wayyiqra/Leviticus. 19:36) we get the idea that the word has special reference to equal balancing.
צֶדֶק tseḏeq – Strong’s H6664 which means, ‘righteous, just, righteousness’ (masculine), occurs twelve times, and is rendered as “righteousness, right or justice” in verses: 7, 62, 106, 121, 123, 138, 142 144, 160, 164, 172.
צְדָקָה tsedaqah – Strong’s H6666 meaning, ‘righteousness, righteous acts, merits, righteous deeds’ (feminine), first occurrence, Berěshith/Genesis 15:6.
In Tehillah/Psalm 119, “righteousness”: verses 40, 142 צַדִּיק tsaddiq – Strong’s H6662 which means, ‘just, righteous, blameless, lawful’ and comes from the primitive root צָדֵק tsaḏeq – Strong’s H6663 which means, ‘to be just or righteous, justified, properly restored’, spoken of a king (Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 23:3), and is used once here in Tehillah/Psalm 119:137.
9 – חֹק ḥoq Strong’s H2706 meaning, ‘something prescribed or owed, boundary, allotment, portion, ordinance, statute’. This word comes from the primitive root חָקַק ḥaqaq – Strong’s H2710 which means, ‘to cut, inscribe, hack, engrave, decree, carve, sceptre, lawgiver’.
It is used 22 times here in Tehillah/Psalm 119.
First occurrence is in Berěshith/Genesis 26:5.
Here, in this Tehillah/Psalm: 5, 8, 12, 16, 23, 26, 33, 48, 54, 64, 68, 71, 80, 83, 112, 117, 118, 124, 135, 145, 155, 171.
10 – דָּבָר daḇar – Strong’s H1697 meaning, ‘speech, word, commandment, chronicles, message’ which in its primitive root form – דָּבַר daḇar – Strong’s H1696 means, ‘to speak, command, counsel, declare, proclaimed, converse, warn, threaten, promise’.
It is used 24 times in Tehillah/Psalm 119, usually giving reference to the 10 Words spoken at Mount Sinai.
First occurrence in Berěshith/Genesis 11:1. Tehillah/Psalm 119: 9, 16, 17, 25, 28, 42 (twice), 43, 49, 57 (pl.), 65, 74, 81, 89, 101, 105, 107, 114, 130 (pl.), 139 (pl.), 147, 160, 161, 169.
The plural of this word דָּבָר daḇar – Strong’s H1697 is דְּבָרִים Deḇarim which means, ‘words’ and is the name of the 5th book of the Torah of Mosheh, which we are busy studying a part of in this Torah portion reading!
As we consider this word – דְּבָרִים Deḇarim – the plural of the word דָּבָר daḇar – Strong’s H1697, in the ancient pictographic script, we are able to recognise the importance of the Word of Elohim, and how it is His Word that prepares us as His Ready Bride!
In the ancient pictographic script, the word דְּבָרִים Deḇarim, looks like this:
Dalet – דְּ:
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement, as one goes back and forth through a tent door; and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or ‘hanging’, as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access, showing us the importance of the Appointed Times/Feasts of יהוה.
Therefore, our need to gather as we are commanded to is the starting point for us to embrace, learn and understand what His Word teaches and instructs us to do.
Beyt – בָ:
The ancient script has this letter as , which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself. We also recognise that the House/Dwelling Place of Elohim is the body of Elohim that is built up as living stones in our Master, יהושע Messiah. A house/tent speaks of your family and to whom you belong and under whom you submit and adhere to, as the House of Elohim has clear instructions for those in the House!
The Light (that is His Word) is for those in the House!
Resh – רִ:
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as ‘the head of a man’ and has the meaning of the head of a man as well as ‘chief, top, begging or first’. It means ‘top’, as in the top or head of a body, and ‘chief’, as in a head of a tribe or people; as well as the one who rules the people.
Every House has a head of the home, and all in the House submit to the instructions of the One who is head of the home, listening to and obeying the words that the Head speaks!
Yod – י:
The ancient script has this letter as which is ‘an arm and hand’, and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’, from the primary functions of the arm and hand, and it also represents worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this. The work of one’s hands is the basic meaning of this letter! And this letter also pictures for us the outstretched Arm and working Hand of Elohim that is not too short to save!
Mem – ם:
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as ‘water’, and also carries the meaning of ‘chaos’ (from the storms of the sea) and can also picture that which is mighty or massive as well as the unknown. We are also able to understand this letter as representing the nations, for the nations are often likened to the seas in Scripture. Water is also a very clear picture for us of that which washes or cleanses us, as we understand form the picture of the bronze laver in the Tabernacle that was used to clean the priests, and was made from the bronze mirrors that was used by the women who worshipped at the Door of the Tabernacle. As we look into the mirror of the Word of Elohim, we are to allow it to cleanse us and cause us to remember how we are to look, speak and act, in complete adherence to His clear words of instructions contained therein!
As we consider the very powerful word – דְּבָרִים Deḇarim – in the ancient pictographic text, we are able to grasp a fuller understanding of the importance of the Words of Elohim, and we are able to see from the collection of these letters the following:
AS WE COME TO THE DOOR (MESSIAH), AND GUARD HIS APPOINTED TIMES/FEASTS THAT ARE COMMANDED FOR THE HOUSE/DWELLING PLACE OF ELOHIM, WE SUBMIT UNDER THE HEAD OF THE HOUSE/BODY, FOR IT IS BY HIS OUTSTRETCHED ARM AND HAND THAT WE ARE DELIVERED OUT OF THE NATIONS AND CLEANSED TO BE A SET-APART BRIDE, THAT SUBMITS TO THE COMPLETE AUTHORITY OF THE WORDS OF OUR MASTER AND KING!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy is the most quoted book in the Renewed Writings (N.T.). It is in this book that Mosheh reflects on the Yisra’ĕlites 40-year Wilderness journey in relation to יהוה’s clear instructions and teaching for them.
A whole lot of Hebrew words at once – crazy I know, but what I am showing you is in a nutshell the wonder and design of this magnificent Psalm which praises יהוה and His Word as Dawiḏ continually expresses the joy he finds in Scripture.
Dawiḏ expresses His love by declaring “Oh how I love Your Torah!” and we need to capture the same heart as Dawiḏ – a man after the heart of יהוה, as we realise that the Torah teaches us wisdom, set-apartness, faithfulness, hope, Truth, brokenness and most of all it becomes our trainer unto Messiah, and to Love Elohim involves a love for His Torah – to hear-guard and do it!
Back to Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 10:12-13: the 4th thing He asks of us:
4 – SERVE HIM
The word for servant, in the Greek, is the word δοῦλος doulos – Strong’s G1401 and is translated as, ‘slave, servant, bondservant, bondslaves – both men and women’.
In the Greek language, the ‘doulos’ (servant/slave) and the group of words associated with this, be it serving, service, slavery etc., all speak of being a ‘slave’ or, speak of standing in the relationship of a slave and so, in the Greek mind-set, regarding the ‘doulos’, we have a service which is seen as service which is not a matter of choice, for the one rendering the service, as he/she has to perform what is required whether he/she likes it or not, for the servant is subject as a slave to the will of another – that is the will of their owner!
One of the distinctive features of the Greek mind-set of self-awareness is the thought of freedom and this mind-set finds personal dignity in the fact that he/she is free and therefore his/her self-awareness stands out sharply from anything which stands under the concept of performing the duties of a slave and obeying what is being commanded to be done.
In the Greek mind-set, where there is the service/duty of a ‘doulos’ (slave) and obedience required by a slave, the right of self-government is seen to be set aside and another’s takes precedence of one’s own, with the thinking that you have no right to govern self as another governs you by their standards.
Now, while we must understand that the Greek city state was very dependent upon the ‘service’ of its citizens – they gave ‘service’ with all their powers and often even with life itself; however, what is repudiated in the Greek mind is ‘service’ after the manner of the ‘doulos’; who not only has absolutely no possibility of evading the tasks that have been laid upon him, but he also has no right of personal choice but must rather do what another will have done and refrain from doing what another will not have done! In the ‘doulos’ the free Greek world always sees its own antitype – and in the ‘doulos’ the concept of performing the duties of a slave it sees the perversion of its own nature of freedom.
Hence, the Greek mind-set can only reject and scorn the slightest resemblance to that of a slave.
With the Greek concept of Elohim there is in fact no place for this word ‘doulos’ being used as an expression of religious relationship and service.
So, in essence, what I am trying to tell you is simply this – to the Greek mind, serving according to the manner of a ‘doulos’ is not on – they will serve, yes, as long as it fits in with their needs and they are in agreement with the requirements and so may even respond saying,
“I will do what you ask, if it makes sense to me and I can fit it in to my way of thinking” and naturally, the Greek mind-set will resist the concept of,
“I will submit and obey and do what you command, even if I do not understand”.
I find this very fascinating as it certainly begins to uncover and explain the resistance by so many to submit and serve Elohim according to His Torah!
One of the major reasons for this resistance of the concept of ‘doulos’, is that this word comes from the word δέω deō – Strong’s G1210 which means, ‘to bind, tie, put in chains, prisoner’.
Certainly, this concept of seeming ‘enslavement’ is greatly rejected by the Greek mind-set who claims its own freedom and understandably rejects the notion to be commanded to obey the Torah!
I clearly remember being sharply rebuked by a man a few years ago who plainly stated that whenever I would say, “You must do…” or “You have to…” in any message that I gave, he would resist that tone and reject the instruction and say that I cannot tell him that he must do anything!!!
Well now I have come to understand just how the effect of Greek thinking has penetrated many minds in their approach to the Truth and as a result refuse to become true servants or a ‘doulos’ of Messiah!
Now, while this word or concept is greatly rejected by a Greek mind-set, we see in the Greek text very clearly that this word is used 127 times in the Renewed writings (N.T.)
In fact, we are told that Messiah took the form of a ‘doulos’:
Pilipiyim/Philippians 2:7 “but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, and came to be in the likeness of men.”
What is the Hebrew mind-set with the concept of servant and servanthood?
Let us take a brief look:
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 25:55 “Because the children of Yisra’ĕl are servants to Me, they are My servants whom I brought out of the land of Mitsrayim. I am יהוה your Elohim.”
As a child of Yisra’ĕl, which we have become by the Blood of Messiah, we are servants of יהוה.
The word used here in the Hebrew is עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 meaning, ‘servant, slave, bondservant’, which is the same meaning as the Greek word ‘doulos’.
The root word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 is used 800 times in the Tanak (O.T.) and is used as a noun and comes from the primitive root verb עָבַד aḇaḏ – Strong’s H5647 meaning, ‘to work, serve, observe, do the work, cultivate, worship’ and carries the understanding of ‘expending considerable energy and intensity in performing a task or function’ – in other words – ‘giving it your all’!
In the ancient pictographic script, the word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ is pictured as:
Ayin – עֶ
The original pictograph for this letter is and represents the idea of seeing and watching, as well as knowledge as the eye is the window of knowledge
Beyt – בֶ:
The ancient script has this letter as , which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.
Dalet – ד
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access.
When we look at this word in the ancient script for a servant, we can see that it speaks of:
ONE WHO WATCHES AT THE DOOR OF THE HOUSE
As I have frequently said – this is what our Master calls us to do; and when we consider that יהושע Messiah is The Door, then we further see our need to continually be looking at Him, guarding to do all His commands – and this is how we too keep watch over the House/Body of Messiah!
As we go to the Torah for a great reference to our understanding, we see the concept of bondservant being described clearly:
Shemoth/Exodus 21:5-6 “And if the servant truly says, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children, let me not go out free,’ 6 then his master shall bring him before Elohim, and shall bring him to the door, or to the doorpost, and his master shall pierce his ear with an awl. And he shall serve him forever.”
This is a profound statement being made here. One that we make, as servants of Messiah, of our Master! When we too have made the good confession and declare our love for our Elohim and Saviour then we serve Him forever – yet there was something that was to happen – let us see how that applies to us today!
Firstly, we must note the clear order being shown here: I Love my master, wife, children… notice that his master comes first and it is the same with us today:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 10:37 “He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me, and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.”
Love for our Master comes first!!!
This does not in any way diminish our love for our spouse or children, but reflects the true nature of our love that without such fervent love for our Master we are truly unable to show complete love in service to our family – but love for Him must always be our primary focus that will cause us to flow with a genuine love for others!
In a declaration of our love for our Master – here it says “if a servant truly says” – this is vital for us to understand, as there are many today who say they love Elohim, yet their love is not expressed in obedience to His instructions and is not made vocally with a loud voice of faith!
This love speaks of a true and complete commitment to Him. Those who claim to ‘stay’ in His house yet do not love Him by obeying Him are thieves and not servants! This is a call for voluntary service – we have been bought at a price and it is for freedom that he has set us free, yet we choose to be His bondservant!
“When a servant truly says” – speaks of one making a clear and definite choice with the intent for others to hear it!
If this be the case: Bring him to the door or doorpost and pierce his ear with an awl! Now let me make it clear that we do not pierce people’s ears today:
Bring him to the door – יהושע tells us in Yoḥanan/Jon 10:7 that He is the door of the sheep.
We who declare our love for our Master who has bought us at a price – we come to Him and declare our desire to forever belong to Him.
Doorpost – Doorpost is where we are commanded to write the Ten Words upon and is a constant reminder to us as we go out and come in that we guard to do all He has commanded us to. It was on the doorpost that Yisra’ĕl was to apply the blood of the Pěsaḥ Lamb
Pierce the ear – the ear speaks of the ability to hear and allow His word to be heard as it is, even as it pierces!
Too many today who claim to be servants of Messiah only want their ears ‘tickled’ and not ‘pierced’ with the Truth.
The piercing of the ear to the doorpost would be symbolic of the servant now belonging to the house and be submitted to the authority of the house. So many today are unwilling to submit to authority like this! If they do not like what they ‘hear’ they all too quickly rush off to find another assembly where they will hear what they like, yet never show true commitment and submission!
The piercing of the ear would show a permanent decision that could not be reversed.
Our relationship to יהוה begins with the command to “hear“, so the ear is the appropriate place to bear this reminder of whom we have chosen to belong to. To commit to the house means to commit to the rulings of the house, which are written on the doorposts—to say, “I hear what you are saying and will guard to do all I hear!”
The piercing of the ear to the doorpost where the Torah is written shows us the commitment to the commands of the House and יהושע who is the Door, was pierced for our transgressions and it is to Him we listen and make our choice to commit to living in obedience to Him – the Living Torah!
He who has ears – ears that are ‘pierced’ that is committed by choice to follow Messiah – let Him hear His right-rulings and live by them!
We must beware of ear ticklers who have the appearance of a door that has no commands upon them – tickling ears will listen gladly to a lawless doorpost!
We are now bondservants – ‘doulos’ – of the Most-High:
Romiyim/Romans 1:1 “Sha’ul, a servant of יהושע Messiah, a called emissary, separated to the Good News of Elohim”
Ya’aqoḇ, the half-brother of יהושע was:
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:1 “Yaʽaqoḇ, a servant of Elohim and of the Master יהושע Messiah, to the twelve tribes who are in the dispersion: Greetings.”
Kěpha Bet/2 Peter 1:1 “Shimʽon Kěpha, a servant and emissary of יהושע Messiah, to those who have obtained a belief as precious as ours by the righteousness of our Elohim and Saviour יהושע Messiah”
Yehuḏah/Jude 1:1 “Yehuḏah, a servant of יהושע Messiah, and brother of Yaʽaqoḇ, to those who are called, set-apart by Elohim the Father, and preserved in יהושע Messiah”
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy lists for us the reason for the curses that come as a result of disobedience:
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 28:47 “Because you did not serve יהוה your Elohim with joy and gladness of heart for all the plenty,”
In the Hebraic mind-set becoming a bondservant of Messiah is not a burden, in fact it is a burden to not become one, and we recognise that we are no longer our own and that He has bought us at a price and we have made the choice to serve.
He makes it clear for us – choose life or death – we choose life and with that choice comes the responsibility to live as He commands and give an account of how we have lived and managed His property when He returns.
When we make the choice to become a bondservant of Messiah forever, we are in a way relinquishing our own ‘right to choose’ any other options to serving in our own manner or way of understanding as we accept by choice to submit and obey whatever He commands us to!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 12:8 “Do not do as we are doing here today – each one doing whatever is right in his own eyes.”
It is to the ‘doulos’ of Messiah that the Ḥazon/Revelation of Messiah has been given, in order to show us what must take place speedily (Ḥazon/Revelation 1:1); and it is the ‘doulos’ of Messiah who are sealed on the forehead (Ḥazon/Revelation 7:3); and it will be the ‘doulos’ of Messiah that will serve Him (Ḥazon/Revelation 22:3).
You cannot serve Elohim and mammon!!!
We are no longer ‘slaves/servants’ or a ‘doulos’ of sin, but have been set free from sin so that we are now a ‘doulos’ (still a servant/slave) to righteousness and we must serve our Master with our all – the very thing Sha’ul speaks about in Romiyim/Romans 6 – he was, among other things, explaining the different mind-set approaches to being a ‘doulos’!!!
Romiyim/Romans 6: 16-18 “Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves servants for obedience, you are servants of the one whom you obey, whether of sin to death, or of obedience to righteousness? 17 But thanks to Elohim that you were servants of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of teaching to which you were entrusted. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became servants of righteousness.”
You are a ‘doulos’ of the one you obey, even if it of self, but we who were a ‘doulos’ of sin, obeyed from the heart that form of teaching – what is written upon our hearts? The Torah – we have obeyed the teaching of the Torah – the very Word we have been entrusted with as a ‘doulos’ of The Master and are now free from sin, equipped to be a good and faithful ‘doulos’ of righteousness, which is to guard to do all our Master commands us to do!!!
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:28 “Therefore, receiving an unshakeable reign, let us hold the favour, through which we serve Elohim pleasingly with reverence and awe”
5 – GUARD HIS COMMANDS
We all should, by now, know what the Hebrew word for ‘guard’ is – שָׁמַר shamar – Strong’s H8104 which means, ‘keep, watch, present, attend to, pay close attention, guard’ and the basic idea of the root of this word is ‘to exercise great care over’.
We are to exercise great care over His Torah!
When used in combination with other verbs the meaning is ‘do carefully or diligently’, i.e. perform carefully by paying strict attention as to what must be done, as it expresses the careful attention to be paid to the obligations of a covenant, to laws, statutes, etc.
The Hebrew root word for ‘do’ is עָשָׂה asah – Strong’s H6213 and carries the meaning of ‘to do, make, carefully observe to do, practice, work, execute’.
A derivative of this root is the word מַעֲשֶׂה ma’aseh – Strong’s H4639 and means ‘a deed, work or acts, accomplishments’.
The Acts or Ma’asei of the Apostles speaks of the deeds or acts of that which the Apostles did and records their ‘acts’ of obedience – their ‘doing’ of the commands and not just hearing!
We are to FEAR יהוה, WALK in His ways, LOVE Him, SERVE Him and GUARD His commands – FOR OUR OWN GOOD!!!
Verse 16 – it has always been about the heart!
Circumcise your heart and do not harden your neck anymore!
Romiyim/Romans 2:26-29 “So, if an uncircumcised one watches over the righteousnesses of the Torah, shall not his uncircumcision be reckoned as circumcision? 27 And the uncircumcised by nature, who perfects the Torah, shall judge you who notwithstanding letter and circumcision are a transgressor of the Torah! 28 For he is not a Yehuḏite who is so outwardly, neither is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh. 29 But a Yehuḏite is he who is so inwardly, and circumcision is that of the heart, in Spirit, not literally, whose praise is not from men but from Elohim.”
Qolasim/Colossians 2:11-13 “In Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not made with hands, in the putting off of the body of the sins of the flesh, by the circumcision of Messiah, 12 having been buried with Him in immersion, in which you also were raised with Him through the belief in the working of Elohim, who raised Him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your trespasses1 and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses”
Our ‘circumcision’ of our hearts is through our immersion into the Name of יהושע Messiah!
What we see here in Deḇarim is clearly a command and we see the application of this command being given and carried out over and over in the Renewed Writings (N.T.) for anyone who wanted to be saved they were to repent AND be immersed (baptised)!!!
Without immersion the foreskin of our hearts cannot be cut away by the full work of the life, death and resurrection of Messiah, and will only leave those who refuse to be immersed in His Name stiff-necked. So many of us were immersed into the wrong name, which we inherited as part of the many lies handed down for generations – but now we recognise the clear command to be immersed in the Name of Messiah, we repented and were immersed in The True Name – this is our circumcision!
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 2:11-13 “Therefore remember that you, once gentiles in the flesh, who are called ‘the uncircumcision’ by what is called ‘the circumcision’ made in the flesh by hands, 12 that at that time you were without Messiah, excluded from the citizenship of Yisra’ĕl and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no expectation and without Elohim in the world. 13 But now in Messiah יהושע you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of the Messiah.”
FEAR, SERVE, and CLING to יהוה, and SWEAR by His Name!
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘clinging’ is דָּבֵק daḇeq – Strong’s H1695 which means, ‘a clinging, cleaving, hold fast’ and this comes from the primitive root word דָּבַק daḇaq – Strong’s H1692 which means, ‘to cling, cleave, keep close, stick to, follow closely, stay with, joined to, joined together’.
In Scripture, the idea or understanding of ‘clinging’ is often used in the context of cleaving to someone in affection and loyalty and we see a couple of examples of this word being used in:
Berěshith/Genesis 2:24 “For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.”
Ruth 1:14 “And they lifted up their voices and wept again. And Orpah kissed her mother-in-law, but Ruth clung to her.”
Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 20:2 “Then all the men of Yisra’ĕl deserted Dawiḏ, to follow Sheḇa the son of Biḵri. But the men of Yehuḏah, from the Yarděn as far as Yerushalayim, clung to their sovereign.”
We are to ‘cling’ to יהוה as we ‘fear’ Him, ‘serve’ Him and ‘swear’ by His Name!
Yoḥanan/John 14:15 “If you love Me, you shall guard My commands.”
If we truly love יהוה, then we will cling to Him – if we are not clinging to Him, then our love is not real!
Romiyim/Romans 12:9 “Let love be without hypocrisy. Shrink from what is wicked, cling to what is good.”
Clinging to יהוה is not just a stiff literal obedience; but it also involves and earnest seeking of His face in doing our utmost to know Him and therefore embrace His commands as that which separates us and identifies us as His.
It is not a matter of “I have go to obey”, but rather it is a “I get the privilege to obey and show my love”
If one tries to do things their own way then they are unable to cling to יהוה!
In the ancient pictographic alphabet, the word דָּבַק daḇaq – Strong’s H1692 is written as:
Dalet – דָּ:
In the ancient script this letter is pictured as , which is a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of a back and forth movement, as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the tent of appointment as the only means of access. We also recognise that יהושע Messiah is The Door, and whoever enters through Him, shall be saved, and shall go in and shall go out and find pasture.
The commands are also commanded to be put on our doorposts as a continual reminder that we are to guard His commands, as we go out and come in, submitting under the authority of The Door, through which we have been given access to being built up as a spiritual House for Elohim.
Beyt – בַ:
In the ancient script this letter is pictured as , pictured as a ‘tent floor plan’, and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents ‘family’ and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself. We, as living stones are built up in the Master, and are the Dwelling Place of Elohim.
Quph – ק:
In the ancient script this letter is pictured as , a ‘horizon’ and depicts the elements of ‘time’, as it pictures the sun in its rising and setting. It therefore carries the meaning of ‘circle’ or ‘to go around’, representing for us both, appointed cycles or times as well as eternity. This can very well picture for us ‘consistency’ in guarding the commands without compromise, as we do not neglect to adhere to the commands of the House!
As we consider this word דָּבַק daḇaq – Strong’s H1692 which means, ‘to cling, cleave, keep close, stick to, follow closely, stay with, joined to, joined together’, in the ancient lettering, we can clearly recognise how we are to be steadfast in our complete commitment in guarding the rules of the House, so to speak!
Seven, in Hebrew, is the primitive root word – שֶׁבַע sheḇa – Strong’s H7651 and from this word we get the denominative verb – שָׁבַע shaḇa – Strong’s H7650 which means, ‘to swear, exchange oaths, take an oath, vow’.
An ‘oath’ is typically and obligation taken upon yourself rather than that which is imposed upon you.
To “swear” in Scripture (which is also the root word שָׁבַע shaḇa) was to give one’s sure and promised unbreakable word in testimony, that the one swearing would faithfully perform some promised deed, or that he would faithfully refrain from some evil act. Occasionally we see in Scripture that one ‘swore’ that he freely acknowledged a truth and would continue to acknowledge it in the future by sticking to what he has heard.
In Hebrew, when one promises to complete something, it is considered ‘done’ and the word could be depended upon, that what was said would be accomplished. This is vital for us to grasp, as we see in the world today how so many ‘break their word’ so easily and brush it off without any regard for the consequences of makes rash promises and vows.
What we are to recognize is that the one we make a promise to is in a sense ‘incomplete’ until we fulfill the vow – and so too are we, as we have ‘by our words’ bound ourselves to another and therefore are required to follow through or else we are rendered as not having completed our work and are ‘incomplete’.
When we ‘swear by His Name’ we are identifying ourselves with His character and His clear standards as prescribed in the Torah and therefore יהושע warns us that we are not to ‘swear FALSELY’!
Mattithyahu/Matthew 5:33 “Again, you heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform your oaths to יהוה.’”
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 19:12 “And do not swear falsely by My Name and so profane the Name of your Elohim. I am יהוה.”
To not swear falsely in יהוה‘s Name is a very serious instruction as many do this as they pass off their own agendas and ideas as that of יהוה. It also speaks of not fulfilling something that we have declared to complete; and now we have all said we will follow His commands and obey them as we have dedicated our lives to following Messiah and therefore we must be careful not to be found faltering in our commitment, for this would be an example of ‘swearing falsely’ in His Name when we fail to do that which we have committed to doing and being marked and sealed as a set-apart nation unto Him!
Messiah reiterates this command by saying we should not swear falsely by anything, but rather let our yes be yes and our no be no as anything beyond this is form the evil one!!!
He was not saying that we cannot swear or make an oath – He was saying that we should not do it falsely!!!
Do not give your word and then break it!
If we are to be a light to the nations and ‘living letters’ of Messiah, then we had better be careful to ensure that we speak the Truth and follow through on our commitments, which ought to always be for His purposes!
Verse 21 – He is your praise!
Tehillah/Psalm 44:8 “In Elohim we shall boast all day long, and praise Your Name forever. Selah.”
Now, the word תְּהִלָּה tehillah Strong’s H8416 means, ‘praise, or a song of praise’ and comes from the word הָלַל halal Strong’s H1984 which means, ‘to shine; to be boastful; to be clear; to make a show; to rave; be foolish; to celebrate; praise, cheer, brag or extol, i.e., extol the greatness or excellence of a person, object or event.’
Tehillah carries the meaning of thanksgiving or speaking positive words about the excellence of another and often these words are in the context of being sung. It also gives the meaning of the act of general or public praise.
The word תְּהִלָּה tehillah Strong’s H8416 also speaks of that praise which comes forth from the heart – certainly something that Dawiḏ understood how to do, because He understood who it was He was praising!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘great’ is גָּדוֹל gaḏol – Strong’s H1419 which means, ‘great, highest, mighty, marvellous’ and Dawiḏ says in:
Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 7:22 “You are great indeed, O Master יהוה. For there is none like You, and there is no Elohim but You, according to all that we have heard with our ears.”
We serve a great Ěl who must be greatly praised!!!
Tehillah/Psalm 63: 3 “Because Your kindness is better than life, my lips do praise You.”
Tehillah/Psalm 65:5 “By awesome deeds in righteousness You answer us, O Elohim of our deliverance, the Trust of all the ends of the earth, and the distant seas”
CHAPTER 11 – LOVE, GUARD AND OBEY!
We continue to see the main thread of these chapters that Mosheh is continually reminding us that we are to not forsake for one minute our clear need to be loving Elohim and guarding His commands through diligent obedience!
To love is to obey, we have seen that already and obedience entails a diligent guarding in order to do.
But what are we to guard?
1 – His CHARGE – the Hebrew root word for ‘charge’ is מִשְׁמֶרֶת mishmereth – Strong’s H4931 and means, ‘to guard, watch, charge, duty, guard post’, and this is the feminine of מִשְׁמָר mishmar – Strong’s H4929 which means, ‘place of confinement, jail, prison guard, watch, observance’, and comes from the primitive root שָׁמַר shamar – Strong’s H8104 which we have certainly come to know as a word often referred to throughout the Torah portions, and means, ‘to keep watch, tend to, preserve, attend, guard’.
This noun is used in two principle senses.
The first is an “obligation” or a “service” to be performed.
The second has to do with something that is to be kept or preserved.
We have an obligation to perform the service of that which a set-apart, royal priesthood and a people for a possession ought to do – and that is to HEAR – GUARD – DO the very commands of יהוה, forsaking the ways of the other nations and not fall prey to the luring lusts of the world and its seemingly desirable ways which will only lead to an abominable form of worship; but rather be a people who worship in Spirit and in Truth.
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 44:16 “They shall enter My set-apart place, and they shall draw near to My table to serve Me, and they shall guard My charge.”
2 – His LAWS – The Hebrew word for ‘laws’ comes from the root word חֻקָּה ḥuqqah – Strong’s H2708 which means, ‘ordinances, custom, manner, something prescribed, an enactment, statute, fixed order’, and is the feminine of חֹק ḥoq – Strong’s H2706 meaning, ‘something prescribed or owed, boundary, allotment, portion, ordinance, statute’.
This word comes from the primitive root חָקַק ḥaqaq – Strong’s H2710 which means, ‘to cut, inscribe, hack, engrave, decree, carve, sceptre, lawgiver’.
In essence, we get the clear understanding of a ḥuqqah as being a ‘law cut in stone’, which means that it is set and fixed!
Tehillim/Psalm 119:16 “I delight myself in Your laws; I do not forget Your word.”
3 – His RIGHT-RULINGS – The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘right-rulings’ comes from the root word – מִשְׁפָּט mishpat – Strong’s H4941 which means, ‘judgement, ordinance, regulations’ and this comes from the primitive root verb שָׁפַט shaphat – Strong’s H8199 – meaning, ‘to judge, govern, rule, pronounce judgement, give law’.
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 33:22 “for יהוה is our Judge, יהוה is our Lawgiver, יהוה is our Sovereign, He saves us”
There is only One who gives us the Law by which we must live and by which we are governed and these judgements and right-rulings and regulations given by Him we must DO!!!
Tehillah/Psalm 89:14 “Righteousness and right-ruling Are the foundation of Your throne; loving-commitment and truth go before Your face.”
4 – His COMMANDS – The Hebrew word for commands is מִצְוֹתַ – ‘mitsvot’– and is the plural of the word מִצְוָה mitzvah – Strong’s H4687 which means, ‘commandment, command, obligation, precept’, which comes from the primitive root צָוָה tsavah – Strong’s H6680 which means, ‘to lay charge (upon), give charge to, command, order, appoint, commission, ordain’.
Tehillah/Psalm 119:115 “Turn away from me, you evil-doers, for I observe the commands of my Elohim!”
His charge, laws, right-rulings and commands we are to guard always and the phrase used for ‘always’, in the Hebrew, is: כָּל־הַיָּמִים – ‘kol – hayamim’ which comes from the two root words:
1) כֹּל kol – Strong’s H3606 which means, ‘whole, all, entire, every, continually’, and
2) יוֹם yom – Strong’s H3117 meaning, ‘day, time, continually, day (as in a 24-hour period)’.
What we see clearly from this is that always means ‘always’!!!
Every single day we are to guard all His Commands which is given by the Hand of Mosheh through His Torah!
Timotiyos Aleph/1 Timothy 6:13-14 “In the sight of Elohim who gives life to all, and of Messiah יהושע who witnessed the good confession before Pontius Pilate, I charge you: 14 that you guard the command spotlessly, blamelessly, until the appearing of our Master יהושע Messiah”
Verse 2-7 make it clear that the Torah is for us today – us who are alive and remember what He has done for us as well as remember what provokes Him to wrath!
We are to guard every command as told in verse 8 – so that we are strong and be able to possess the Land!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘strong’ is חָזַק ḥazaq – Strong’s H2388 and carries the meaning, ‘to grow firm, fasten upon, strengthen, take firm hold of’ and can have the concept of ‘grasp between your ears, get a firm handle on the matter’.
This instruction carries with it an intensity that must be applied in diligently guarding to do what we have been commanded to and in:
Iyoḇ/Job 27:6 “My righteousness I hold fast, and I do not let it go. My heart does not reproach me as long as I live.”
Here Iyoḇ uses this word חָזַק ḥazaq, in expressing how he has a firm grip on righteousness and was not going to let go!
Kenaʽan – the land they were going in to possess had more sensible dependence upon the blessing of heaven than Mitsrayim, which was a country, that may have been fruitful in some aspects, but was flat and was watered not as other countries were with rain, but rather was watered by the over flowing of the Nile river at a certain season of the year.
This meant that a great deal of labour was required to irrigate the land, and this made them be quicker to imagine, that the power and ability of their own hands had brought them their wealth and supply.
Kenaʽan, on the other hand, was uneven, a land of hills and valleys and was watered by rain, a land that had a greater variety of soil types for several farming purposes.
So, this land being watered by rain of heaven meant that it saved them a whole lot of labour – for while the Mitsrians were guttering out ditches up to their knees in mud to get water to their land, the Yisra’ĕlites could leave it to Elohim to water, as long as they were obedient to guard His commands!
If His commands were guarded then יהוה would send both the EARLY rain and the LATTER rain!
The former and latter rains are related to the two comings of Messiah.
The Hebrew word that is translated as early rain is יוֹרֶה yoreh – Strong’s H3138 and is the active participle of the word יָרָה yarah – Strong’s H3384 which means, ‘to throw or shoot, direct, instruct, teach, teacher’.
The Hebrew word that is translated as latter rain is מַלְקוֹשׁ malqosh – Strong’s H4456 and comes from the same as the word לֶקֶשׁ leqesh – Strong’s H3954 which means, ‘the after growth’ and the denominative verb of this is לָקַשׁ laqash – Strong’s H3953 which means, ‘to take the second crop, to take everything, to glean the harvest’.
What we recognise from the early and latter rain is that with the first coming of Messiah we can recognise that He came to ‘teach, instruct’ us and with His second coming as the latter rain, He is coming to take up a harvest of souls – He is coming to reap!!!
These words are used both as references to these two events in Hoshěa and Yo’ěl:
Hoshěa/Hosea 6:3 “So let us know, let us pursue to know יהוה. His going forth is as certain as the morning. And He comes to us like the rain, like the latter rain watering the earth.”
The word translated as ‘latter rain’ is מַלְקוֹשׁ malqosh – Strong’s H4456 and the word translated as ‘watering’ is יוֹרֶה yoreh – Strong’s H3138.
Yo’ěl/Joel 2:23 “And you children of Tsiyon, be glad and rejoice in יהוה your Elohim, for He shall give you the Teacher of Righteousness, and cause the rain to come down for you, the former rain and the latter rain, as before.”
The word used for both ‘teacher’ and ‘former rain’ is the word מוֹרֶה moreh – Strong’s H4175 which means both, ‘teacher’ and ‘rain’ and comes from the word יָרָה yarah – Strong’s H3384 from which we get the term ‘early rain’.
The word used in the above verse for ‘latter rain’ is מַלְקוֹשׁ malqosh – Strong’s H4456.
יהושע Messiah is both our Teacher of righteousness and He is the ‘gatherer of the after crop’ – He has come and shown us the way and taught us through His life, death and resurrection how we are to walk in Him and guard the Torah – when He comes again will He find faith – active faith that is seen in the diligent guarding and doing of His commands???
The danger of not guarding His commands is being deceived into following other mighty ones!
Those who do not receive a love for the Truth will be handed over to destruction and they will believe the lies and falsehood:
Tas’loniqim Bět/2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 “The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power and signs and wonders of falsehood, 10 and with all deceit of unrighteousness in those perishing, because they did not receive the love of the truth, in order for them to be saved. 11 And for this reason Elohim sends them a working of delusion, for them to believe the falsehood, 12 in order that all should be judged who did not believe the truth, but have delighted in the unrighteousness.”
This verse is a very serious warning to those who refuse to accept the need to walk in the Torah – those who refuse to receive a love for the Truth – that is a willingness to guard and do the commands of Elohim!
Another very sobering verse as seen in the words of Messiah is found in:
Yoḥanan/John 5:43 “I have come in My Father’s Name and you do not receive Me, if another comes in his own name, him you would receive.”
יהושע (Yahushua) came in His Father’s Name – יהוה (Yahweh)!!!
As we can see that the first 3 letters of Messiah’s Name contain that of the first 3 letters of the name of Elohim: יהושע – יהוה:
Remember that Hebrew is read from right to left:
יהוה – is the letters: י (yod) – Y; ה (hay) – H; ו (vav) – W; ה (hay) – H
יהושע – is the letters: י (yod) – Y; ה (hay) – H; ו (vav) – W; ש (shin) – SH; ע (ayin) – A.
Why I am pointing this out is to show that any other name that is presented as the Messiah, that does not contain that of the Father’s is false!!!
Nowhere in the Greek constructed name of ‘Jesus’ can you find any source or attachment to our Heavenly Father!
As we all know, by the words of יהושע in the above verse, that so many do not receive Him, yet gladly receive ‘another’ who has come in his own name!!!
Now, I am not saying that two different people walked the earth at the time of Messiah – what I am saying is that there is a vast difference between the True Hebrew Messiah – יהושע – who is the Living Word made flesh – the Living Torah who teaches us to hear, guard and do all the commands of Elohim as opposed to what has been presented and portrayed b y a Greek mind-set of a man whom they have called ‘Jesus’ who by their teachings claims that they Torah has been done away with and is no longer applicable – and the majority in the world today accept and receive this lawless doctrine of a Greek ‘Jesus’, while rejecting the Torah of Elohim, manifested to us in the flesh of the Hebrew יהושע Messiah!
Guard yourselves lest you be deceived into following a false mighty one and end up bowing down to it!!!
The torah is to be in our heart and in our beings – it must define who we are and lead our every step as we walk in Messiah.
Shemoth/Exodus 13:9 “And it shall be as a sign to you on your hand and as a reminder between your eyes, that the Torah of יהוה is to be in your mouth, for with a strong hand יהוה has brought you out of Mitsrayim.”
Shemoth/Exodus 13:16 “And it shall be as a sign on your hand and as frontlets between your eyes, for by strength of hand יהוה brought us out of Mitsrayim.”
What we see from all these accounts we see that the Sabbath is a sign that it is יהוה who sets us apart, and that we will know that יהוה is Elohim and there is no other! Pěsaḥ and Matzot is a sign for us to remember that the Torah is to be in our mouth and that יהוה brought us out of Mitsrayim! And from here in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy we are further told that we are to bind His words on us as a sign!
Observance of His Sabbath and Appointed Times marks us, and our ability to bind His Word on our hand and be as frontlets between our eyes every single day will be how we are able to faithfully guard His Word diligently!
As discussed already that the hand speaks of our work and between our eyes speaks of our conscious choice and cognitive thinking – we are to be a people meditating day and night on His Torah?
The Hebrew root word that is translated here as ‘bind’ is קָשַׁר qashar – Strong’s H7194 and means, ‘to bind, league together, knit, tied’ and the idea here is that we are to have His Word ‘knit’ and interwoven into our lives, so much so that when others look at us they should see the Torah that is written upon our hearts and is in our mouths – to do it – in other words we become a ‘letter’ of the Truth!
Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 3:2-3 “You are our letter, having been written in our hearts, known and read by all men, 3 making it obvious that you are a letter of Messiah, served by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living Elohim, not on tablets of stone but on fleshly tablets of the heart.”
When the Torah in as frontlets between the eyes – then we can begin to understand more clearly how the Torah is a lamp and light for our daily walk:
Tehillah/Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
Are you ‘shining’ the Light of the Truth? Can people see that you are ‘marked’ by the Truth, or do you hide it through compromise?
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6:20-23 “My son, watch over your father’s command, and do not forsake the Torah of your mother. 21 Bind them on your heart always; tie them around your neck. 22 When you are walking about, it leads you; when you lie down, it guards you. And when you have woken up, it talks to you. 23 For the command is a lamp, and the Torah a light, and reproofs of discipline a way of life.”
The Hebrew word for bind here, is also קָשַׁר qashar and the idea of having to tie them around our neck is the idea of putting on the yoke of יהושע Messiah – The Living Torah – that we may be led forth in Truth:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 11:29-30 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am meek and humble in heart, and you shall find rest for your beings. 30 “For My yoke is gentle and My burden is light.”
Binding the Torah on our hand and letting it be that which guides our every step as it lights the way will cause us to ‘enter in and possess’ all that has been promised and is yes and aměn in Messiah!
When we walk about, lie down and get up! This clearly speaks of our whole life!!!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6:20-24 “My son, watch over your father’s command, and do not forsake the Torah of your mother. 21 Bind them on your heart always; tie them around your neck. 22 When you are walking about, it leads you; when you lie down, it guards you. And when you have woken up, it talks to you. 23 For the command is a lamp, and the Torah a light, and reproofs of discipline a way of life, 24 to guard you against an evil woman, from the flattering tongue of a strange woman.”
I have highlighted verse 22 here from Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6, as the clear wording given here should naturally cause us to turn back to the Torah portion given in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6 as well as this Torah portion, helping us with the clear wisdom of acknowledging our need to be meditating day and night on the Torah!
Combining the instructions given here in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:19 and Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6:22, we can learn the following benefits of obeying what is being commanded here.
1 – When we walk about the Torah leads us!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘leads’ comes from the root word נָחָה naḥah – Strong’s H5148 which means, ‘to lead, guide, bring forth, govern’.
His Word leads us and guides us and governs us on the way!
This word נָחָה naḥah – Strong’s H5148 is also used in:
Tehillah/Psalm 5:8 “O יהוה, lead me in Your righteousness because of those watching me; make Your way straight before my face.”
Tehillah/Psalm 23:3 “He turns back my being; He leads me in paths of righteousness for His Name’s sake.”
Tehillah/Psalm 27:11 “Teach me Your way, O יהוה, and lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies.”
Tehillah/Psalm 31:3 “For You are my rock and my stronghold; for Your Name’s sake lead me and guide me.”
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 58:11 “Then יהוה would guide you continually, and satisfy your being in drought, and strengthen your bones. And you shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.”
2 – When we lie down – the Torah guards us!
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 3:24 “When you lie down, you need not be afraid. And you shall lie down and your sleep shall be sweet.”
We can go and lie down peacefully each day, knowing that as we stay in our Master, that our Elohim never slumbers nor sleeps, and He constantly watches over us.
3 – When you have woken up – the Torah talks to you!
When you are meditating on the Torah day and night, then His Word will constantly be in your thoughts and even when you wake up you will find that the Word is speaking tenderly to you!
It is a joy to often wake up with a rejoicing worship song in your head, or a portion of Scripture that comes to remembrance and ushers in the waking up with the promise of assurance and peace.
I often say that if you are not reading, studying and meditating on the Word of Elohim, then it will not ‘talk to you’ when you wake up, and if you are waking up very grumpy and moody, then perhaps you need to spend more time in the Word!
That which we put in and treasure up within us, will be brought forth in what we say and do!
Luqas/Luke 6:45 “The good man brings forth what is good out of the good treasure of his heart, and the wicked man brings forth what is wicked out of the wicked treasure of his heart. For out of the overflow of the heart his mouth speaks.”
If the good treasure of the Word of Elohim is in our hearts then our mouths will overflow and bring forth that which is good, and thus be able to teach our children well – if not then our children run the risk of being taught wickedness!!!
We need to know the Scriptures well so that we are able to teach our children what is best in each and every situation.
We are to teach our children where we come from, how we are to walk daily in obedience, as well as about life and death as we diligently prepare them in every way!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘talks’ in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 6:23 comes from the root word שִׂיחַ siaḥ – Strong’s H7878 means, ‘talk, speak, meditate’. We are to open up our mouths and speak the Truth!
However, to be able to speak the Truth you have to know the Truth and know what you are proclaiming; and one’s ability to speak Truth only gets better by meditating on the Word day and night!
If you are not meditating on His Word daily how do you think you will be able to speak it???
Tehillah/Psalm 77:12 “And I shall meditate on all Your work, and talk of Your deeds.”
Verse 20 – put them on your doorposts
Writing the commands on our doorpost is a sure sign to all that enter your house that the rule of your house is the Torah! This is also a great reminder for us each time we go out or come in that the Torah is to be upon the doorposts of our hearts and so putting them on our homes is a physical and literal way of causing to be reminded of who we are and to whom we belong, just as we wear tzitzit on the edges of our garments to remind us of all the commands and that we are to guard to do them and not search after our own hearts and eyes, after which we went whoring!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘doorpost’ is מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 which means, ‘doorpost, gate post’.
This word מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 is used 19 times in the Scriptures and is used to describe the gateposts of the city of Azzah (Gaza), which Shimshon carried away together with the gate, which is a symbolic picture of the authority of the enemy being carried away and being destroyed!
This word מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 is also used to describe the gateposts of the Tabernacle court, as well as the gateposts of the Temple, that Shelomoh built, as well as those described by Yeḥezqěl in referring to the Millennial Temple.
In Shemoth/Exodus 12:7,22-23 we see how the Yisra’ĕlites applied the blood of the lamb to the doorposts of their homes.
This word מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 is also used to describe a servant who declared his love for his master after being released in the 7th year.
If the servant desired to stay then he would be brought to the doorpost and his master would pierce his ear and the servant would belong to his master forever! We are also instructed to write the commands on our doorposts, as seen in:
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:9 “And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:20 “and shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates”
While we can certainly see that the term מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 means doorpost, what we find today is that some people market and sell what they call a ‘mezuzah’, and what they are selling is a small handmade item that has a piece of paper rolled up inside with the commands written on them, and this can be attached to the doorposts of one’s home.
While the idea may sound inviting, what we take note of here is that the Hebrew word מְזוּזָה mezuzah – Strong’s H4201 simply means ‘doorpost’ and everyone has doorposts!
Therefore, there is no need to buy a marketed product, but rather just the need to obey the Word and write the commands on one’s doorposts.
This can be done in many creative ways while not neglecting the command, as we have taken the 10 words of Elohim in Hebrew and written them with a wood burning tool on the doorposts of our front door, which certainly causes a great number of discussions that can be an opening for many to come to know the commands of our Elohim, while at the same time always being a reminder to our whole family that we are to always guard His commands, and that He protects of going out and coming in!
Having the commands on our doorposts or gates where we enter in is a reminder to us that יהושע Messiah – The Living Torah – is the Door and that He stands at the door and knocks:
Ḥazon/Revelation 3:20 “See, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I shall come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me.”
In Shemoth/Exodus we also see that the blood of the lamb was to be on the doorposts of the houses where they would eat the Pěsaḥ Meal:
Shemoth/Exodus 12:7 “And they shall take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and on the lintel of the houses where they eat it.”
Now we know that this is a shadow picture of the Blood of Messiah – The Lamb who takes away the sins of the world, and the question we need to ask ourselves is this – Are we ready for dinner???
He is coming again and when He does – will He find faith (active faith) as we have His yoke leading us and bound to our hand, and our homes ruled according to His Torah?
Besides the simple obedience to this command – putting the 10 Words on the doorposts and lintel of our homes looks awesome and certainly does stir the interest of strangers!
Having said that though, we must also be careful to not only have an outward ‘show’ while the inside is rotten!
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:26 “If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is worthless.”
What we see being described in this chapter is the practical ways of guarding, or rather helping us to remember to guard the commands.
In verse 22-23 we see a clear conditional clause being given: If you… then יהוה shall!
The Hebrew word translated as ‘if’ is אִם im – Strong’s H518 which is a conditional participle or primary conjunction which renders, ‘if, though, either, neither, when, whenever’.
Whenever we see an ‘if’ being used as a conditional participle we can know that there are definite consequences to our ability to follow carefully that which is required!
If you will diligently guard the commands… in order to do it… and love יהוה, to walk in His ways and cling to Him… then He will drive out your enemies and give you ground!
These last couple of verses in this Torah portion simply summarises the clear being given throughout this portion, which is the call for us to be a people that hear, guard and do the commands of Elohim, expressing our love for Him through a diligent obedience to His Word, which we can only do if we are truly clinging to Him!
The promise that everywhere your foot treads, being given to an obedient, called-out and set-apart nation, is a promise based on the Covenant He made with Aḇraham, as seen in:
Berěshith/Genesis 15:18 “On the same day יהוה made a covenant with Aḇram, saying, “I have given this land to your seed, from the river of Mitsrayim to the great river, the River Euphrates”
The Promised Land is from the River of Mitsrayim, which is the Nile to the Great River Euphrates – and we recognise that this Land has not yet been fully occupied by Yisra’ĕl, as this actually includes most of Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Syria and the Sinai Peninsula!!!
No wonder there is great unrest in this region of the middle east as the enemy is constantly trying to disrupt and steal what belongs to Aḇram and his descendants; and in the Day of יהוה we shall see the fulfilment of this promise!
What may seem as repetitive commands, being given from these Torah portions, we understand that they are repetitive for a reason – so that we do not neglect to hear –guard and do them!
And as we clearly see from this Torah portion – the reward/result of obedience is clear: יהוה will guard us with His Covenant and loving-commitment!!!